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Littler | Brexit and Immigration – How do the rights of overseas workers change at the end of 2020?

With the Brexit transitional period coming to a close, and given the frequent movement of workers of all nationalities across the EU, many UK employers have questions about regulations governing work authorizations for their employees.

This GQ|Littler article summarizes the new immigration system, which will apply to both EU and Non-EU Nationals in the same way from 1 January 2021. See below, which compares the applicable rules and identifies where action is required.

Image courtesy of GQ Littler.

From 1 January 2021 a new immigration system will apply to both EU and Non-EU Nationals in the same way.

The current immigration rules are relaxed for both groups as follows:

  • The skills threshold for Tier 2 will be reduced from level 6 (equivalent to degree level) to include ‘medium skilled’ occupations known as Regulated Qualifications Framework (RQF) level 3 (broadly equivalent to A-level).
  • Employers will no longer be required to first advertise their vacancies to settled workers before being able to recruit from outside the UK (i.e. abolishing the resident labour market test).
  • The minimum salary threshold will be reduced to £25,600 (and may be below this in certain circumstances).
  • The 20,700 per annum numerical cap on the number of Tier 2 (General) applications will be suspended.


  • Vanessa Ganguin, Partner | vanessa.ganguin[at]

Compliments of Littler Mendelson  P.C. – a member of the EACCNY.