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Newsletter - online version for 5 April 2012

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Firstly we remind you again that UK Government fees for UK visa and nationality applications will increase again from 6 April 2012. In most cases fees will increase by only 2 percent, but there will be larger increases on visa fees for certain immigration routes. Including an increase in Tier 2 visa fees from 400 to 480 and Tier 4 visas will increase from 255 to 289 for students and their dependents. You should apply soon to avoid the Government fee increases.

If you are interested in studying in the UK, USA, Canada, New Zealand, or Australia we can help. If you complete our student immigration enquiry form one of our representatives will be happy to contact you to let you know about the immigration process and possible colleges in the Country of your choice.

Canadian Immigration Minister Jason Kenney announced this week a new proposal that would change how foreign skilled workers' education credentials are assessed. The proposed new requirement would require applicants wishing to immigrate under the Federal Skilled Worker program to have their foreign education credentials assessed and verified before they arrive in Canada.


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The UK Border Agency has confirmed that visas granted to visiting athletes, coaches and other officials for London's Olympics Games will bar them from forming any civil partnerships or from marrying while in the UK. The UKBA announced they were imposing these restrictions amid concerns that illegal immigrants and terrorists will take advantage of the games to get into the country.

India's commerce minister told his US counterpart last week that he is concerned about the rising rejection rates for applications made by Indian tech workers to obtain H-1B visas in the US. Immigration advocates claim the US needs to import more foreign high-tech workers to help deal with the shortage of US high-tech workers. Both US and Indian companies agree that it is getting increasingly difficult to import tech workers to the US.

From 6 April 2012, migrants from outside the EU earning less than 35,000 will not be allowed to settle in the UK. Critics have accused ministers of risking patient health in favour of a "crude" immigration policy after government documents revealed that almost half of the migrant nurses will be forced to leave the UK under the new immigration rules.

The UK Border Agency announced that they will increase the funds required to satisfy the maintenance requirement for Tier 2 visa applicants. The changes go into effect from 14 June 2012. If you plan to make a Tier 2 visa application on or after 14 June 2012, you must ensure that you have the correct funds held in your account as soon as possible. The funds will need to be held in your bank or savings account for a 90 day period prior to the date of your visa application.

The US Department of State has released the April Visa Bulletin and announced that the EB2 employment based immigration priority dates for Indian and Chinese nationals have stayed the same as in the March bulletin. However, the cutoff date for EB2 immigrant petitions for Indian and Chinese nationals could go back to August 2007. The cut off date is currently 1 May 2010. This could mean years of further delay in processing of employment based immigration visas for Indian and Chinese nationals.

Under new UK immigration visa rules, non-EU artists may have an easier time obtaining visit visas for the UK. From 6 April 2012, the new system will introduce a permitted paid engagements entry route that allows non-EU artists one month leave to enter the UK without having to go through the points-based system.

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Newsletter 5 April 2012

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