We previously published a general update on the immigration concessions that the Home Office has introduced as a result of COVID-19 which can be found here.
Concession to allow individuals to apply for long term immigration status from within the UK where they would normally need to leave the UK and apply from overseas.
The Home Office previously announced that individuals who are currently in the UK may apply from within the UK to switch to a long-term immigration category provided that their current leave expires between 24 January 2020 and 31 July 2020. This includes applications where the individual would usually need to return to their home country to apply for new entry clearance.
This concession has now been extended to include individuals whose leave expires after 31 July but only where they “urgently need to make a new application, for example, to start a new job or course of study, and cannot leave the UK to make an application from overseas. This includes applications to switch into a different work route or to change jobs in the same route using a new Certificate of Sponsorship”.
All other requirements for the immigration route still need to be met, including payment fo the immigration fees.
This development will be welcomed by applicants and sponsors but it remains to be seen how the Home Office will decide which other situations it considers to be urgent beyond the need to start a new job or begin a course of study.
We recommend seeking advice before submitting an application under any of the COVID-19 concessions.