Retention of nurses on the shortage occupation list

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Nurse checking watch

24 / 3 / 2016 2.01pm

The government has today accepted a recommendation made by the Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) to retain nurses on the shortage occupation list (SOL).

This means: 

  • applications for Restricted Certificates of Sponsorship (RCoS) will be prioritised by the UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) points allocation system - increasing the likelihood of nursing applications being granted.
  • the requirement to earn £35,000 or more to qualify for permanent settlement in the UK (indefinite leave to remain) will not apply to individuals for whom nursing has appeared on the SOL at any time during their employment in a nursing role.

The rules for sponsors

The usual exemption from the resident labour market test (RLMT) for roles included on the SOL will not apply in the case of nurses. Employers will be required to demonstrate that a RLMT has been carried out in order to issue a certificate of sponsorship to an individual from outside of the EEA for a nursing role.

Employers must continue to only apply for RCoS when they are certain they will be usedBefore applying you are required to ensure the individual you are sponsoring has:

  • passed part 1 of the NMC test of competence
  • been issued with an offer of employment.

Further information

Visit the gov.uk website to download the full MAC report Partial review of the shortage occupation list, review of nursing and the government response.

We will publish any further information when it becomes available.

Tier 2 changes

The government has also announced today plans to make changes to the way Tier 2 of the points-based immigration system operates. These changes will have implications for all future non-EEA recruitment activity.

See our news page for further information.

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