From April 2012, the legal arrangements allowing international students to work in the UK after they graduate will change when the current scheme is replaced by a new provision under the new Tier 2 Sponsored Skilled Workers programme. Full details may however not be released until as late as March 2012.
The information on the new Tier 2 scheme is that applicants must have a job offer from an employer before their student visa expires (currently the length of the course, plus 4 months), and must be paid a minimum salary that is likely to be in the region of £20,000 (or the salary specified in the Standard Occupational Code published by the UKBA). The individual also has to meet points requirements. The employer will not have to apply the Resident Labour Market Test, unlike the main scheme under Tier 2 arrangements for those looking for long term employment in the UK.
Possible sources of help for those affected by the changes are:
• UKBA Employer Helpline: tel 0300 123 4699 or via email
• UKCISA advice line open from Monday to Friday, 1pm – 4pm: 020 7107 9922