Employment and Immigration Law Update - Brexit – approaching the end of the transition period

25 June 2020

As expected the UK government confirmed this month that it does not wish to extend the Brexit transition period. The EU has accepted that this will therefore end as planned on 31 December 2020. Negotiations between the parties regarding a potential trade deal are ongoing.

Meanwhile, we are still waiting for further information regarding the new immigration system from 1 January 2021. Hopefully we will start to see draft rules being laid in the autumn, to give employers time to prepare.

The MAC report on updating the shortage occupation list to include roles skilled to 
RQF3-5 is expected in September 2020. This will be led by the new chair of the MAC, Professor Brian Bell. He is a professor of economics at King’s Business School and previously held roles at the IMF and Bank of England.

We now have just over 12 months to go until the deadline for EU nationals living in the UK to register under the EU Settlement Scheme. As at 31 May 2020 over 3.6 million applications had been received, of which over 3.3 million have been decided. Of those 57% were granted settled status and 41% pre-settled status. 900 applications were refused and the remainder were deemed invalid, or withdrawn.

Despite these seemingly high numbers, concerns remain that many people still need to apply, particularly the vulnerable and those living in rural areas, where it is harder for them to access support with the application. Whilst Polish nationals have already submitted the highest number of applications (697,900), the Government believes they still make up a high volume of the remaining cohort.

The Government communications team has identified that under 16s are an increasingly important audience for communications and we expect them to look increasingly to schools, to make sure that all of the pupils and families they deal with have received appropriate information.

This article is from the June 2020 issue of Employment and Immigration Law Update, our monthly newsletter for HR professionals. To download the latest issue, please visit the newsletter section of our website. For further information please contact Clare Hedges or another member of Birketts' Immigration Team.

The content of this article is for general information only. It is not, and should not be taken as, legal advice. If you require any further information in relation to this article please contact the author in the first instance. Law covered as at June 2020.


Clare Hedges

Senior Associate - Head of Immigration

+44 (0)1223 326605

+44 (0)7581 150137