NEWSLETTER No. 35 - June 2011


A major new consultation has been launched by the Immigration Minister, the content of which makes disturbing reading for many migrants in the UK.

The main proposal is to break the link between temporary migration and permanent migration (i.e. settlement). Migrants in the UK on a work permit or Tier 2 visa can currently apply for UK settlement after 5 years. The government proposes that this shall be removed and that it shall allow only the “brightest and best workers to stay permanently”.

This would involve re-categorising work permits and Tier 2 visas as “temporary” visas. The proposals also suggest that high earners or those in shortage occupations would be able to retain a right to settlement.

This would involve a system where some Tier 2 visa holders could stay and others would not be able to do so. Tier 2 visa holders that do not have a right to settlement would only be allowed to stay for a maximum period of 5 years. 

It is important to remember that these proposals are only part of a consultation at this stage. It is also likely that the government would not be able to introduce these changes to migrants who have already been in the UK accruing time towards settlement on a work permit / Tier 2 visa. 

Nonetheless, the proposals are very specific and do reflect current government thinking – breaking the link between “temporary” and “permanent” migration was a key Conservative policy pledge in the last General Election. As we have seen since the General Election, Liberal Democrat influence on government immigration policy is minimal.

The consultation closes on 9 September 2011. We will of course keep you informed on any changes through our newsletter. 

* Our free Online Assessment Form

* United Kingdom info page with the latest migration news


Make sure you use a reputable and competitive currency provider when transferring funds to the UK or to any other country. 

Most banks offer poor exchange rates meaning that simply by using a dedicated currency provider, you can save a lot of money.

Make sure you use a currency provider that is fully registered by the UK authorities. 

We recommend Worldwide Currencies who have assisted many of our clients in the past and can offer exchange rates with no commission or charges, and often up to 5% better than the banks. 

For more information contact Richard Bass, Worldwide Currencies;
Tel +44 (0) 20 3326 4403  

Previous Newsletters on migration issues:
Newsletter 1 - January 2007
  Newsletter 2 - March 2007
  Newsletter 3 - April 2007
  Newsletter 4 - May 2007
  Newsletter 5 - May 2007 - In Focus: Australia
  Newsletter 6 - June 2007
  Newsletter 7 - July 2007
  Newsletter 8 - August 2007
  Newsletter 9 - October 2007
  Newsletter 10 - November 2007
  Newsletter 11 - December 2007
  Newsletter 12 - February 2008
  Newsletter 13 - March 2008
  Newsletter 14 - June 2008

  Newsletter 15 - July 2008
  Newsletter 16 - September 2008
  Newsletter 17 - November 2008
  Newsletter 18 - December 2008
  Newsletter 19 - January 2009

  Newsletter 20 - February 2009
  Newsletter 21 - April 2009
  Newsletter 22 - June 2009
  Newsletter 23 - August 2009
  Newsletter 24 - October 2009
  Newsletter 25 - December 2009
  Newsletter 26 - February 2010
  Newsletter 27 - March 2010
  Newsletter 28 - June 2010
  Newsletter 29 - July 2010
  Newsletter 30 - September 2010
  Newsletter 31 - November 2010
  Newsletter 32 - December 2010
  Newsletter 33 - February 2011
  Newsletter 34 - April 2011

Contact us

Commonwealth Immigration Consultants Ltd.

based in London and Cambridge

Tel. +44 (0) 1223 830 916

Australia Immigration and ResidencyAUSTRALIA - THE NEW POINTS SYSTEM HAS ARRIVED

Recently, major new changes to the Australian points system have been introduced and will be effective on 1st July 2011. The changes DO NOT affect those who have already applied.

These changes introduce a new method of calculating points, a new Pass Mark and other different criteria.

Perhaps the biggest change is that the previous system of awarding points according to your occupation (i.e. 60, 50 or 40 points) has now been removed. Now, all occupations on the Skilled Occupation List are on an equal footing with no points awarded for occupation. However, as a basic entry requirement - an applicant must have a skills assessment and relevant experience in an occupation on the list.

The points for age have been changed with different age brackets introduced. The upper age threshold has now been increased from 45 to 50 years.

More points are available for English language with a distinction between “Proficient” and “Superior” English language ability.

For the first time - points are awarded for qualifications – such as a degree, diploma or trade qualifications.

Work experience points are now more important than under the previous system. Points are awarded for Australian and overseas work experience of up to 8 years.

Points are still awarded for state sponsorship, partner skills, Australian study etc...

A new Pass Mark has been set at 65 points – but obviously no direct comparison can be made with the old Pass Mark of 120 points, as the new points system is completely different.

These changes reflect the most radical development in skilled migration to Australia for many years. The new system will obviously produce winners and losers. 

It will be vital to undertake a proper eligibility assessment for each applicant. If you are interested in moving to Australia, then please complete the Online Assessment form on our website so we can see if you qualify on the new system.

* Our free Online Assessment Form

* Australia info page with the latest migration news


Please see our dedicated webpage on all EEA applications - EEA Family Permits, Residence Cards, Permanent Residence.

You can also obtain your FREE EEA GUIDE (emailed directly to you) providing detailed information on making applications, supporting documents and specialist advice.

See our EEA webpage at

* EEA info page with free Guide on EEA applications

Commonwealth ImmigrationKEEP UP TO DATE THROUGH OUR


We hope that this newsletter has been informative for you.  However, remember everyone's circumstances are different so if you or a friend or family member want to check your eligibility to emigrate then either

1) complete the Online Assessment form on our website or
2) give us a call on +44 (0) 1223 830 916

We would love to hear from you!

Tim McMahon
Commonwealth Immigration

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