Home Office backs down over new work permit system

The Home Office has backed down over its planned
restructuring of the immigration fast track service that allows overseas
executives process work permits or apply for residency.

There was a danger that overseas businessmen would have had
to queue up outside the Croydon immigration office from the early hours to get
applications processed.

The Government had previously announced that it would reduce
the number of applications a week that the 200 organisations in the fast track
scheme could make. It was feared that this would have a huge impact on
companies employing foreign nationals.

However after recent publicity and pressure from the
Immigration Law Practitioners Association (IPLA), the Home Office relented and
is now considering an alternative scheme.

Julia Onslow-Cole, a partner at law firm Cameron McKenna,
who represented the IPLA said: “I am delighted with the outcome and look
forward to having further consultations with the Home Office shortly to clarify
their proposals.

“It’s settled now and the Government has agreed to keep the
status quo until a new system is put in place,” she said.

The latest proposals are
based around a system where certified copies of passports could be submitted,
eliminating the risk of executives having to queue for hours in Croydon.

By Ross Wigham

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