If you’re thinking of moving to the UK or are currently living here, these updates apply to you. GOV.UK has updated many application forms this week across various tiers and situations.

GOV.UK updated literature on Tier 4 Visa, fees for citizenship, extended stays and other forms this morning. The last time these were updated was back in 2013, so the updates have been a long time coming.

These forms are to be used from today, 18 March, so don’t panic if you have already submitted an application before today.

Let us take you through some of the most relevant updates.

UK Tier 2 Visa

The number of Tier 2 Certificates of Sponsorship(CoS) available for March, according to the Government table, is 2,329. This is not a precise figure.

The actual number will be more like the number available in February 2016. UK Visas and Immigration published its February report stating that its figures were correct as of 17 February, 2016.

Employers with a Tier 2 Visa Sponsorship Licence need to apply for a CoS for immigrants from outside the EU that they wish to hire.

Under the current UK immigration system, unused Tier 2 restricted CoS to hire people who are currently based outside the UK can be reclaimed after three months. This increases the availability of restricted CoSs.

UK Tier 4 Visa

Students on this visa cannot extend their stay in the UK to pursue a degree in a lower level than their current degree.

For example, if you’re studying a Masters course, you cannot enroll for a Bachelor’s. However, you can apply for another Master’s or PhD course of study.

The wording prohibiting students to be self-employed has been altered. It specifies students cannot set up their own business on this visa.

Updated list of UK sponsors

The UK government constantly updates its lists of registered sponsors for workers and students. In the application process for a student visa or working in the UK? Make sure that you check the appropriate list right before you apply.

UK residence cards

The general extended family members of an EEA (or Swiss) national form has been updated. Extended family, unmarried partner, cousin, sibling, aunt, uncle, nephew or niece.

An update specifically for non-EEA family members of Croatian nationals. There have been other updates specific to Croatian citizens, so note.

Extending your stay in the UK

If you’re on a temporary visa in the UK and want to stay a bit longer, read the updated forms for the following:

  • extending your stay in the UK as a Tier 1 or Tier 5 dependent
  • extending your stay in the UK on a Tier 5 temporary worker visa
  • extending your stay as a Tier 1 Investor
  • extending a Tier 1 Entrepreneur or Graduate Entrepreneur visa
  • extending you stay on a Tier 1 Exceptional Talent visa

Other updates to take note of

  • Approved English language tests
  • Settling in the UK as a retiree
  • Fees for citizenship applications