The Forum for Expatriate Management http://totallyexpat.com Dedicated Exculsively to Global Mobility and International Assignee Management Thu, 24 Apr 2014 09:41:03 +0000 en-US hourly 1 British “boomerang emigrants” returning home because they miss Fish & Chips and Corrie http://totallyexpat.com/british-boomerang-emigrants-returning-home-fish-chips-corrie-2/ http://totallyexpat.com/british-boomerang-emigrants-returning-home-fish-chips-corrie-2/#comments Thu, 24 Apr 2014 09:40:14 +0000 http://totallyexpat.com/?p=14379 Continue reading ]]>
  • United Arab Emirates tops the ‘come home’ list with people lasting just six-months
  • Weather, UK politics and job prospects most likely to drive people overseas
  • Moving abroad is a dream for many of us, but a new study from international relocation experts, Robinsons, reveals which countries will have us heading home first, as well as the top reasons for ‘boomerang emigration’ – people relocating overseas but returning home.robinsons 2

    The study questioned 1,000 Brits who have emigrated and returned to the UK, as part of Robinsons’ drive to better understand the UK’s international moving trends.

    Coming top of the boomerang emigration list is the United Arab Emirates, where the majority of people (23%) return home after only six months in the country.  At the other end of the scale is North America, where people are likely to stay the longest, with the majority sticking it out for 3-5 years.

    Top “boomerang emigration” countries

    1)      United Arab Emirates – average stay 6 months

    2)      Mainland Europe – average stay 12 months

    3)      Australia/New Zealand – average stay 2 years

    4)      Asia – average stay 3 years

    5)      Africa – average stay 3 years

    6)      North America – average stay  3-5 years

    While there is little difference in men and women’s attitudes to five of the six countries, the United Arab Emirates divides the genders, with men returning home after six months, while women are more likely to stay for up to three years.

    Why leave the UK?

    The top reasons for Brits emigrating in the first place emerged as the promise of warmer climes (66%), improved job prospects (32%), and a disillusionment with current UK politics (26%) as well as UK culture changing for the worse (24%).

    Top five reasons emigrants return home to the UK

    While missing friend and family emerged as the most popular cause for boomerang emigration, other, more surprising factors also emerged, including people missing:

    1)      Family and friends (39%)

    2)      Typical English food (fish and chips, Marmite, Curry) 18%

    3)      English TV shows (especially soaps and news) (15%)

    4)      The people (13%)

    5)      The weather (9%)

    Ian Brown, Head of International Moving at Robinsons, said: “Often, people have a vision of what it will be like to live abroad, whether it’s a warmer climate, different lifestyle or the promise of career progression. However, the reality often fails to match up to the dream, and as our research shows, it’s often the things we all take for granted that we miss the most. But with the proper research and planning, the risk of this can be minimised, and here at Robinsons, we always advise our clients to do their due diligence – which we can help them with – before making a big decision.”

    Source: Robinson

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    UNITED KINGDOM: Tier 1 (General) Category to be Eliminated April 6, 2015 http://totallyexpat.com/united-kingdom-tier-1-general-category-eliminated-april-6-2015/ http://totallyexpat.com/united-kingdom-tier-1-general-category-eliminated-april-6-2015/#comments Thu, 24 Apr 2014 09:10:50 +0000 http://totallyexpat.com/?p=14370 Continue reading ]]> Foreign nationals who are in the UK under Tier 1 (General) status will no longer be allowed to apply for extensions of stay after April 5, 2015. Applications for indefinite leave to remain under Tier 1 (General) will be accepted only up to April 6, 2018.united kingdom

    The Home Office has announced it is eliminating the Tier 1 (General) category and will no longer accept applications for extensions of stay under the category after April 5, 2015. Additionally, the Home Office will stop accepting applications for indefinite leave to remain, the UK’s term for permanent residence, under Tier 1 (General) on April 6, 2018.

    Tier 1 (General) was closed for new applications in 2011, but Tier 1 (General) workers have been permitted to renew their status as a transitional measure. It was thought that renewals would be allowed indefinitely, but the Home Office is opting to completely close the category.

    What This Means for Employers and Foreign Nationals

    Companies with foreign employees in the UK under Tier 1 (General) status should work with their immigration service provider now to identify affected individuals and review available immigration options.

    Foreign nationals in Tier 1 (General) status who will seek indefinite leave to remain must ensure they will meet the requirements by no later than April 6, 2018. This may involve avoiding lengthy absences from the UK, as an applicant for indefinite leave to remain must not have absences that exceed 180 days per year in the five years preceding the application date. Foreign nationals should maintain detailed records documenting time they spend outside of the UK.

    This alert is for informational purposes only. If you have any questions or would like further advice on how this change may affect you, please do not hesitate to contact the global immigration professional with whom you work at Fragomen Worldwide or send an email tolondoninfo@fragomen.com.

    Source: Fragomen

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    FRANCE: Temporary Tax on High Remuneration Compliance Developments http://totallyexpat.com/france-temporary-tax-high-remuneration-compliance-developments/ http://totallyexpat.com/france-temporary-tax-high-remuneration-compliance-developments/#comments Wed, 23 Apr 2014 10:07:25 +0000 http://totallyexpat.com/?p=14357 Continue reading ]]> The filing deadline is quickly approaching for France’s Taxe exceptionnelle de solidarité sur les hautes remunerations (hereafter, “temporary tax”). The temporary tax, which covers many forms of remuneration and is payable by the company, applies generally in the year in which the remuneration is expensed in the company’s accounts.france

    The French Finance Act for 2014 introduced this temporary tax, which is due by employers at a rate of 50 percent on the portion of remuneration that exceeds EUR 1 million per year per individual in calendar years 2013 and 2014.

    Why This Matters

    With the filing deadline of 30 April 2014 coming up soon, the French tax authorities only last week released the form required to compute and pay the tax. Employers may be challenged to meet, in such a short period of time, their compliance obligation, particularly as the tax authorities have yet to clarify a number of issues surrounding the temporary tax.

    The types of remuneration and benefits falling within the scope of the tax are as follows:

    • Wages, salaries, any other similar items and benefits in cash or in kind;

    • Directors’ fees;

    • Retirement pensions, severance packages, allowances, or benefits, and any other items paid in relation to a retirement;

    • Amounts granted in accordance with the provisions of the French Labor Code regarding employee profit-sharing and employee savings plans (participation, intéressement, épargne salariale);

    • Grant of options, Restricted Stock Units, BSPCEs (equity award for newly incorporated entities); and

    • Reimbursements to other entities of remuneration listed above. This is to ensure that the tax is still due even if the remuneration has been split between several entities whether in France or abroad.

    The tax applies for the year in which remuneration is expensed in the company’s accounts. However, French qualified share awards are taxable in the year of grant. The basis is similar to the basis of the French 30-percent employers’ social contribution due at grant, meaning either the face value of the shares (for free share awards, this is 100 percent of the value of the shares; for stock options, it is 25 percent of the value) or the value as stated for IFRS2 purposes.

    The tax is payable on or before 30 April 2014, for remuneration expensed or granted in 2013. It is capped at 5 percent of the 2013 turnover of the paying/granting entity. The tax, due on 1 February 2014, must actually be paid on or before 30 April 2014, using the specific form, which has now been provided by the French tax authorities.

    It is a meant to be a two-year tax and will be due before 30 April 2015, in relation to remuneration expenses or granted in calendar year 2014.

    FIDAL Note

    There are still unanswered questions. Although clarification was expected in the form of guidance, it seems that such guidance will not be published in time for this year’s filing.

    Employers based in France (including permanent establishments of foreign entities) now need to finalize their submissions to the French tax authorities.

    Source: KPMG

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    European Union: EU States Expected to Harmonize Immigration Rules for Intracompany Transferees by 2016 http://totallyexpat.com/european-union-eu-states-expected-harmonize-immigration-rules-intracompany-transferees-2016/ http://totallyexpat.com/european-union-eu-states-expected-harmonize-immigration-rules-intracompany-transferees-2016/#comments Wed, 23 Apr 2014 09:53:55 +0000 http://totallyexpat.com/?p=14354 Continue reading ]]> European lawmakers are expected to adopt a new directive that will require EU member states to offer a combined work and residence permit for intracompany transferees. The permit would be exempt from labor market testing and enable permit holders to work, with limitations, throughout the EU.european union

    European lawmakers are expected to adopt a directive that will harmonize immigration rules for intracompany transferees in most EU member states and facilitate the transfer of managers, specialists and graduate trainees both into and within the region. Once the directive is signed into law and enters into force – expected to occur in the coming weeks – EU member states will likely have until the end of 2016 to implement the directive into their domestic laws. Denmark, Ireland and the United Kingdom are not required to implement the directive.

    Benefits of the New Permit

    Under the directive, EU states will create a new permit specifically annotated with “intra-corporate transferee” (ICT) status.

    ICT permits will be valid for a maximum stay of three years for managers and specialists and one year for graduate trainees. In addition to permitting work in the EU state that initially grants the permit, transferees will be permitted to work for entities of the same multinational company in other EU states for up to 90 days within a six month period. For these intra-EU work stays, member states may require, at a maximum, someone holding an ICT permit to submit a government notification prior to entry for employment in their territory. The ICT permit will be the first European work permit to allow work in multiple member states for up to 90 days within a six month period. For intra-EU work stays exceeding 90 days, member states may require a separate ICT permit application.

    ICT permit holders will be permitted to work at third-party client sites of the multinational host company.

    Accompanying family members of ICT permit holders will benefit from eased access to local labor markets and should equally benefit from the directive’s intra-EU mobility provisions.

    Requirements

    The directive will cover the temporary transfer of non-EU national managers, specialists and graduate trainees from an entity located outside the EU to an EU entity belonging to the same multinational group. The directive does not specify criteria for qualifying corporate relationships, but it contemplates a diverse range of possible business relationships.

    EU states will be permitted to set their own requirements for prior qualifying employment, provided that the requirement is within three to twelve months for managers and specialists and three to six months for graduate specialists. There will not be specific educational requirements for managers or specialists; graduate trainees will be required to hold a university degree. Applications for the permits will be exempt from labor market testing requirements. Transferees must earn a salary that is at least equal to that of local workers in comparable positions.

    The directive even foresees the possibility for member states to create expedited procedures.

    What This Means for Employers

    The directive should do much to facilitate the movement of key workers for multinational companies. The impact will likely vary across EU member states, because member states will have considerable latitude to determine how to incorporate the permits into their domestic immigration systems. The adoption of the directive may lead to minor procedural changes in some countries, while in others it could lead to a substantial overhaul of a country’s immigration system.

    How Fragomen Can Assist

    Fragomen was actively engaged in pre-vote talks related to the directive and will further inform clients of any impact on national regulations, procedures and policies. Fragomen will work with governments in member states to communicate client concerns about potential domestic reforms.

    This alert is for informational purposes only. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact the global immigration professional with whom you work at Fragomen Worldwide or send an email to brusselsinfo@fragomen.com.

    Source: Fragomen

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    INDIA: Retirement funds requesting names of foreign workers http://totallyexpat.com/india-retirement-funds-requesting-names-foreign-workers/ http://totallyexpat.com/india-retirement-funds-requesting-names-foreign-workers/#comments Tue, 22 Apr 2014 09:18:12 +0000 http://totallyexpat.com/?p=14345 Continue reading ]]> IMPACT – MEDIUM

    What is the change? The Indian agency that handles employee retirement funds, the Employees’ Provident Fund Organization (EPFO), is asking the Foreign Regional Registration Offices (FRRO) for complete lists of foreign nationals working in India.india

    What does the change mean? Companies with foreign workers must be in compliance with EPFO requirements and make contributions to the provident (retirement) fund accounts of each employee. The EPFO is seeking the names of foreign workers, and some regional offices are asking for documentary proof of retirement contributions.

    • Implementation timeframe: Immediate.
    • Visas/permits affected: Employment visas.
    • Who is affected: Companies required to register and pay into the fund.
    • Impact on processing times: None.
    • Business impact: The new scrutiny is a compliance reminder to companies obligated to contribute to the fund.
    • Next steps: Employers should make sure they are complying with the registration and contribution requirements.

     

    Background: The Provident Fund Act requires that companies with 20 or more employees contribute to the retirement fund accounts of each employee, including workers employed through contractors. Foreign nationals working in India for more than 180 days must be registered with the FRRO within 14 days of their arrival. Contributions into the fund cover workers for various social security programs provided by EPFO. On April 1, EPFO issued a memo directing its regional offices to obtain lists of foreign workers from FRRO offices to monitor whether companies are meeting their obligations to contribute to the fund.

    BAL Analysis: The Bangalore regional FRRO has begun asking foreign nationals for documentary proof of retirement contributions, and other regional offices are expected to follow. Employers should be ready to furnish proof of contributions before renewing employment visas.

    This alert has been provided by the BAL Global Practice group and our network provider located in India. For additional information, please contact your BAL attorney.

    Follow us on Twitter: @BAL_Immigration

    About Berry Appleman & Leiden LLP

    Founded in 1980, Berry Appleman & Leiden (BAL) provides comprehensive global immigration services from six offices across the U.S. and from offices in Geneva, London, Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo, Singapore and Sydney. BAL manages global visa matters and customized application approaches for work permits, business visas, and residence permits in more than 100 countries. With a single cost center for worldwide operations, BAL offers centralized management with regional and local support for the complete spectrum of global immigration matters.

    Source: BAL Global

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    CHINA: Foreign registrations getting tight scrutiny in Shanghai http://totallyexpat.com/china-foreign-registrations-tight-scrutiny-shanghai/ http://totallyexpat.com/china-foreign-registrations-tight-scrutiny-shanghai/#comments Tue, 22 Apr 2014 09:15:23 +0000 http://totallyexpat.com/?p=14342 Continue reading ]]> IMPACT – MEDIUM

    What is the change? Police in Shanghai have begun strictly enforcing foreign registration.

    What does the change mean? Police are conducting random checks at residential compounds to determine whether foreign nationals living in Shanghai have registered their street addresses with local police as required.china

    • Implementation timeframe: Immediate.
    • Visas/permits affected: All visas and permits.
    • Who is affected: All foreign nationals visiting and living in Shanghai.
    • Business impact: Foreigners may face fines for non-compliance.

    Background: China’s Exit and Entry Law went into effect on July 1, 2013, and requires all foreigners to register with local police within 24 hours of their arrival. Hotels are required to provide this information to the police, but foreign nationals not living in hotels must do so on their own. Foreigners must register upon arrival, when they move or when their passport changes. A foreigner who fails to register can be fined up to RMB 5,000. Police in Shanghai have been strictly enforcing the law, conducting random checks at residential compounds. However, each police station can impose fines at their discretion. Some police stations give foreigners up to 72 hours to register.

    BAL Analysis: Employees should be aware of the increased enforcement of this rule. They should make sure to register within 24 hours of arrival. Those living in hotels and apartments should contact management hotel reception and apartment management to make sure they are registered.

    This alert has been provided by the BAL Global Practice group and our network provider located in China. For additional information, please contact your BAL attorney.

    Follow us on Twitter: @BAL_Immigration

    About Berry Appleman & Leiden LLP

    Founded in 1980, Berry Appleman & Leiden (BAL) provides comprehensive global immigration services from six offices across the U.S. and from offices in Geneva, London, Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo, Singapore and Sydney. BAL manages global visa matters and customized application approaches for work permits, business visas, and residence permits in more than 100 countries. With a single cost center for worldwide operations, BAL offers centralized management with regional and local support for the complete spectrum of global immigration matters.

    Source: BAL Global

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    MALAYSIA: All companies must use online portal for Employment Passes processed through Putrajaya http://totallyexpat.com/malaysia-companies-online-portal-employment-passes-processed-putrajaya/ http://totallyexpat.com/malaysia-companies-online-portal-employment-passes-processed-putrajaya/#comments Tue, 22 Apr 2014 09:12:30 +0000 http://totallyexpat.com/?p=14339 Continue reading ]]> IMPACT – HIGH

    What is the change? With little notice, the Putrajaya headquarters of the Immigration Department of Malaysia has mandated that all companies use the new online portal to apply for employment passes.

    What does the change mean? Manual applications are no longer accepted and companies must enroll in the Expatriate Services Department’s online portal before they can submit employment pass applications in Putrajaya.malaysia

    • Implementation timeframe: Immediate.
    • Visas/permits affected: Employment Passes.
    • Who is affected: Companies submitting applications through Putrajaya. This will not affect work permit applications processed through Cyberjaya or the Malaysian Investment Development Authority (MIDA).
    • Impact on processing times: This unscheduled rollout to all companies may cause delays during the initial period as the new system is implemented. 
    • Business impact: As this is a somewhat sudden change, there may be delays in foreign assignments while companies enroll and register through the portal.
    • Next steps: Employers will have to register on the portal and obtain a login ID and password before submitting applications.


    Background:
    The Immigration Department of Malaysia launched the online portal last month, starting with energy sector companies and later phasing in six more industries. The Putrajaya headquarters verbally confirmed that it is enforcing mandatory online portal registration for all companies ahead of a scheduled rollout. As of April 21, companies processing applications through Putrajaya will no longer be able to submit applications over the counter.

    BAL Analysis: To avoid delays, employers should work with their BAL attorney to gather the information necessary to register on the portal.

    This alert has been provided by the BAL Global Practice group and our network provider located in Malaysia. For additional information, please contact your BAL attorney.

    Follow us on Twitter: @BAL_Immigration

    About Berry Appleman & Leiden LLP

    Founded in 1980, Berry Appleman & Leiden (BAL) provides comprehensive global immigration services from six offices across the U.S. and from offices in Geneva, London, Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo, Singapore and Sydney. BAL manages global visa matters and customized application approaches for work permits, business visas, and residence permits in more than 100 countries. With a single cost center for worldwide operations, BAL offers centralized management with regional and local support for the complete spectrum of global immigration matters.

    Source: BAL Global

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    CANADA: Canada Experience Class filling quickly, could reach quota soon http://totallyexpat.com/canada-canada-experience-class-filling-quickly-reach-quota/ http://totallyexpat.com/canada-canada-experience-class-filling-quickly-reach-quota/#comments Tue, 22 Apr 2014 09:09:22 +0000 http://totallyexpat.com/?p=14336 Continue reading ]]> IMPACT – MEDIUM

    What is the change? The Canada Experience Class (CEC) has received over 6,000 applications since the annual filing began in November 2013, and its quota of 12,000 could be reached before the end of the fiscal year.canada

    What does the change mean? If the quota is reached, applicants must wait until November, when the category reopens, to apply.

    • Implementation timeframe: Immediate and ongoing.
    • Visas/permits affected: CEC for Permanent Residence.
    • Who is affected: Foreign nationals applying in this category.
    • Impact on processing times: None.
    • Business impact: As one of the most popular avenues to permanent residency, foreign workers may have to delay submitting applications until the next fiscal year, which starts in November 2014.
    • Next steps: File applications as soon as possible before the quota is reached.

    Background: The CEC allows foreign skilled workers to apply for permanent residency if they have lived and worked in Canada for at least 12 months; they must also meet language criteria. Citizenship and Immigration Canada will accept a maximum of 12,000 applications in the CEC category between Nov. 9, 2013, and Oct. 31, 2014. Within the general quota, there are sub-caps of 200 applications for certain job categories.

    BAL Analysis: The pace of filings indicates that the category could be filled by August. Foreign nationals who qualify should file their applications as soon as possible.

    This alert has been provided by the BAL Global Practice group and our network provider located in Canada. For additional information, please contact your BAL attorney.

    Follow us on Twitter: @BAL_Immigration

    About Berry Appleman & Leiden LLP

    Founded in 1980, Berry Appleman & Leiden (BAL) provides comprehensive global immigration services from six offices across the U.S. and from offices in Geneva, London, Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo, Singapore and Sydney. BAL manages global visa matters and customized application approaches for work permits, business visas, and residence permits in more than 100 countries. With a single cost center for worldwide operations, BAL offers centralized management with regional and local support for the complete spectrum of global immigration matters.

    Source: BAL Global

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    UKRAINE: Entry restrictions imposed for Russian men http://totallyexpat.com/ukraine-entry-restrictions-imposed-russian-men/ http://totallyexpat.com/ukraine-entry-restrictions-imposed-russian-men/#comments Tue, 22 Apr 2014 09:06:59 +0000 http://totallyexpat.com/?p=14333 Continue reading ]]> IMPACT – HIGH

    What is the change? The hotline of the State Border Guard Service of Ukraine has confirmed that Ukraine has imposed dramatic new restrictions barring entry to most Russian men.

    What does the change mean? Male Russian nationals between the ages of 16 and 60, and male Ukrainian nationals between 16 and 60, who are registered in Crimea will not be allowed entry if traveling without their families unless they have close relatives in Ukraine or invitations from businesses or individuals.ukraine

    • Implementation timeframe: Immediate.
    • Visas/permits affected: All visas and permits.
    • Who is affected: Male Russian nationals and male Ukrainians registered in Crimea who are between the ages of 16 and 60. Note that Russian nationals who hold valid temporary residence permits or permanent residence permits for Ukraine should not be affected.
    • Business impact: Significant impact on companies with Russian employees and assignees in Ukraine and Russian business travelers.
    • Next steps: Affectedbusinesses andtravelers should be prepared for sudden changes in entry requirements between Russia and Ukraine as the conflict continues.

    Background: Ukraine has said it imposed the entry restrictions on Russian men based on a terror threat. Since the February regime change in Ukraine and Russia’s annexation of Crimea, the two countries have mutually tightened entry requirements without necessarily announcing an official policy change.

    Ukraine’s State Border Guard Service has confirmed verbally the general entry ban on Russian men. Exceptions will be made for emergencies at the discretion of the head of the regional border control, if a traveler shows documents proving they have family living in Ukraine or are visiting sick or recently deceased relatives, or if they have a certified letter of invitation from a Ukrainian firm or individual Ukrainian citizen. Ukrainian males aged 16 to 60 who are registered in Crimea and the city of Sevastopol will also be restricted from entry, unless they are traveling to the funeral of a close relative or show airline tickets departing Ukraine or hotel vouchers for their stay. In addition, Crimean women aged 20 to 35 will only be allowed entry after they pass “filtering and verification checks.”

    Ukraine immigration authorities have stated that Russians with temporary residency permits or permanent residence permits in Ukraine should not be affected by the new regulation.

    BAL Analysis: The situation in Ukraine is in flux and businesses should expect changes to entry rules involving Russian nationals.

    This alert has been provided by the BAL Global Practice group and our network provider located in Ukraine. For additional information, please contact your BAL attorney.

    Follow us on Twitter: @BAL_Immigration

    About Berry Appleman & Leiden LLP

    Founded in 1980, Berry Appleman & Leiden (BAL) provides comprehensive global immigration services from six offices across the U.S. and from offices in Geneva, London, Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo, Singapore and Sydney. BAL manages global visa matters and customized application approaches for work permits, business visas, and residence permits in more than 100 countries. With a single cost center for worldwide operations, BAL offers centralized management with regional and local support for the complete spectrum of global immigration matters.

    Source: BAL Global

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    UNITED KINGDOM: Minimum Salary Levels Increased for Tier 2 Workers http://totallyexpat.com/united-kingdom-minimum-salary-levels-increased-tier-2-workers/ http://totallyexpat.com/united-kingdom-minimum-salary-levels-increased-tier-2-workers/#comments Tue, 22 Apr 2014 09:03:33 +0000 http://totallyexpat.com/?p=14330 Continue reading ]]> Minimum salary requirements for Tier 2 foreign nationals working in the UK increased by approximately one to three percent on April 6, 2014.

    The United Kingdom has increased the minimum salary requirements for foreign workers under Tier 2 – the UK’s primary temporary employment category – effective April 6, 2014. The changes broadly parallel salary inflation. united kingdom

    Employers are required to ensure that Tier 2 foreign nationals earn not less than the higher of the following two options:

    1. The salary threshold for their Tier 2 subcategory, which increased by approximately one percent; or
    2. The published minimum salary for their occupation, which increased by approximately three percent for most occupations.

    The new salary levels apply to all Restricted Certificates of Sponsorship issued after April 6, 2014. Restricted Certificates of Sponsorship are assigned to foreign nationals through the Sponsor Management System online tool.

    What This Means for Employers

    Employers should ensure that all relevant teams and managers are aware of the increase and plan for any effect on budget.

    This alert is for informational purposes only. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact the global immigration professional with whom you work at Fragomen Worldwide or send an email to londoninfo@fragomen.com.

    Source: Fragomen

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