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UKBA: Changes to student visa rules are now in force

Organization: 
Home Office UK Border Agency
Date of Publication: 
4 July 2011
Summary: 

The Home Office announces that significant changes to the Tier 4 student route of the points-based system have come into effect today 

Note: the following is a Home Office UK Border Agency press release

Changes to student visa rules are now in force

04 July 2011

Significant changes to the Tier 4 student route of the points-based system have come into effect today.

We have revised the Immigration Rules relating to Tier 4 in order to:

• restrict work entitlements, by only allowing students sponsored by higher education institutions (HEIs) and publicly funded further education colleges to work part-time during term time and full-time during vacations;

• restrict sponsorship of dependants to those of students sponsored by HEIs on postgraduate courses lasting 12 months or longer, and of government-sponsored students on courses lasting longer than 6 months;

• require institutions to confirm that courses represent genuine academic progression from any previous courses studied by the student in the UK; and

• create a streamlined application process for low-risk nationals sponsored by Highly Trusted sponsors.

These changes are aimed at delivering a strong migration system which tackles immigration abuse while allowing genuine students to study at genuine colleges.

We have also revised the application forms for Tier 4 (General), Tier 4 (child) and dependants under the points-based system. The new versions of these forms should be used with immediate effect.

The changes to the Immigration Rules were laid in Parliament on 13 June. A previous news story gives full details of all the changes and associated amendments that come into force today.

The latest revisions follow the Home Secretary's statement to Parliament about student visas, and the publication of a statement of intent, in March.

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