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High Potential Individual Visa

High Potential Individual Visa

It quite frequently happens these days that the Home Office comes up with yet another visa route for entrepreneurs and highly-skilled/highly-qualified people.

Now another one has been added to the list: the “High Potential Individual” visa. We do not have many details yet, but the Home Office informs us that:

“The UK government will introduce a new High Potential Individual route to make it as simple as possible for internationally mobile individuals who demonstrate high potential to come to the UK. Eligibility will be open to applicants who have graduated from a top global university. The UK government will explore the scope to expand eligibility to other characteristics of high potential. There will be no job offer requirement, giving individuals the flexibility to work, switch jobs or employers and make contributions to the UK economy. The route will also allow eligible individuals to extend their visa and settle in the UK, subject to meeting specific requirements.” 

So there we are. We would of course like to have some idea of what the Home Office considers to be a “top global university”. Will this include British universities, or will they be deemed not to be sufficiently “global”? A close analysis of the words suggests that they might not, but of course we will have to wait and see.

And, in any case, will a degree from one of these top global universities be sufficient in itself to secure the visa? The words suggest not, but we are going to have to wait and see about this as well.

Some readers may remember the old Tier 1 (General) visa – and some may remember the even older Highly-Skilled Migrant Programme (HSMP). These visa routes enabled applicants to score points in various different areas including level of qualification. Maybe it will come out something like that: it will not be the first time that the Home Office has rehashed something and renamed it.

Well, we shall have to wait and see; when we learn anything interesting we will let you know.



Oliver Westmoreland

OISC Level 3 Immigration Lawyer

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