Home secretary confirms end of UK settlement right

04 Oct 2011 | Posted by Carl Thomas

People who move to Britain for employment reasons will no longer be given the option of automatic settlement after five years.

At the moment, individuals have the option to settle in Britain after their UK visa or UK work permit expires if they have been employed in the country for a minimum of five years.

However, home secretary Theresa May confirmed at a speech during the Conservative Party Conference that non-EU professionals will no longer be automatically allowed to remain in the country following the expiration of their UK visa, regardless of the length of their employment.

“Under Labour, temporary immigration led to an automatic right to settle here,” she stated at the party conference in Manchester. Ms May added: “So we’re breaking that link, making sure that immigrants who come here to work go home at the end of their visa.”

The announcement follows a raft of other policies bought in by the Conservative-led coalition government designed to curb UK immigration. Economic migration has been capped, a tighter focus on UK visas for students has been introduced and there are now “tough new rules for family visas” as well as compulsory English language tests designed.

It is hoped that the new UK visa and immigration policies will help to lower net migration to the tens of thousands and improve the integration of those people that do more to Britain. However, the economic effects of the changes remain to be seen.