Occupation Health Worker Occupation Health Worker

New Immigration Salary List recommends only 21 Occupations for Overseas Workers

The Home Office's Migration Advisory Service has returned their rapid reviw of the Immigration Salary List, recommending only 21 occupations for foriegn nationals applying for UK Visas as a "Skilled Worker".

The new Imigration Salary List (ISL) replaces the older Shortage Occupation List (SOL) in identifying key job roles in the UK that are in need of overseas workers, Observers believe that these changes, in additon to the Salary increases, will drastically reduce the pool of available international workers and severely hamper the ability of businesses to fill shortage occupations. 

The Government has previously come under fire for related legislation increasing Skilled Worker salary thresholds. This legislation, due to come into force on 4th April 2024, raises the salary required for a Skilled Worker visa from £26,200 to £38,700 - well above the Mean average salary for the UK. Most occupations listed on the new ISL now require a minimum annual salary of £30,960 (up from £20,960), with Health and Care Sector occupations requiring a minimum threshold of £23,200 (up from £20,960). 

The new ISL also does away with a 20% "Going Rate Discount" applied to wages on the old SOL, on the basis that it could lead to undercutting the salaries of the domestic workforce and to the exploitation of sponsored workers.

This new legislation is likely to have a big impact on legal migration to the UK, making it increasingly hard for foreign nationals to migrate legally to the UK, and disincentivising companies from employing them. Without Foreign Nationals filling these skilled occupations, the labour shortages are likely to become more severe. 

In many industries with major labour shortages the consequences of being unable to fill posts has been an increase in labour exploitation. Notably we have seen this in the care sector in recent years. Companies, consumers and law enforcement need to be vigilant to prevent this happening.