Coronavirus and UK Immigration
The Coronavirus outbreak has left many questions unanswered about immigration in and out of the UK.
Many countries including the UK and the EU have put in place travel restrictions or have travel restrictions put in place against them for a complete list of all travel restrictions in place click here.
Coronavirus and UK Immigration, Chinese nationals in the UK
In the wake of increased travel restrictions and quarantine measures that have been put in place as a result of the Coronavirus outbreak, the Home Office has released guidelines for Chinese nationals who are currently on a visa in the UK.
The guidelines state that any Chinese nationals who are currently in the UK, who arrived before the outbreak of the Coronavirus and have complied with the conditions related to their visa (non-tourist visas) and whose visa expires between 24 January and 30 March 2020, will have their visas automatically extended to 31 March 2020. The extension will be automatic and will be granted under the same conditions of the leave that was originally granted.
Chinese nationals who are Tier 2 Visa Holders
For Chinese nationals who are living and working in the UK on Tier 2 Intra-Company Transfer visas, the Home Office has announced a concession that will allow all Tier 2 ITC visa holders the opportunity to switch to a Tier 2 General Visa from within the UK (usually these applications need to be made from outside of the UK).
Tier 2, Tier 4, Tier 5 Visa Holders and Sponsor Duties
The Home Office is also relaxing rules on for Tier 2, Tier 4 and Tier 5 visa holders as a result of the coronavirus where sponsors of such visa holders will not have to report absences from employees or students which have been caused by the outbreak.
As a result of these unique circumstances, sponsors should not withdraw their sponsorships of Tier 4 students who have been affected by the virus and have not been able to attend class for more than 60 days, or for Tier 2 / Tier 5 employees who have exceeded four weeks of absence without pay.
Non-Chinese non-EEA nationals who are normally resident in China
For Chinese nationals who are non-EEA nationals and are residents of China who are visiting the UK on a tourist visa or for Chinese Nationals who are in the UK on a visa as granted by Irish Authorities or the Crown Dependencies, exceptions may be granted depending on your unique circumstances.
For more information, it is best to check with the Home Office directly about your specific case by contacting their special Coronavirus Immigration Helpline on 0800 678 1767: Email: CIH@homeoffice.gov.uk.
Those who have Covid-19 whos visas are expiring
If you have a Covid-19 and you must remain in the UK, you can apply for an extension. Our legal team can advise you on how to do this and take care of this matter for you.