The Home Office has published its latest Statement of Changes in Immigration rules ( HC 535), fifth in the year 2015. Most of the changes take effect on the 19th November 2015 and will affect applications submitted on this date onwards, unless otherwise stated. The key changes are as follows:

making asylum claims from EU nationals invalid, unless exceptional circumstances apply. Where a claim is treated as inadmissible, it will not receive substantive consideration and there is no right of appeal against a decision to treat a claim as inadmissible though this may be challenged by way of Judicial Review, clarifying the circumstances in which refugee status will be withdrawn. These are where evidence emerges that such status was obtained by deception or where it is clear that protection is no longer needed or where someone commits a serious crime or is a considered a danger to UK’s national security or someone who instigates or otherwise participate in acts covered by Article 1F of the Refugee Convention, including those who engage in extremist activities that represent a threat to UK’s national security.

ensuring indefinite leave and naturalisation applicants, who normally rely on an English language qualification, take a secure English language test, the introduction of the £35k minimum earnings threshold for Tier 2 settlement, which will come into force on 6 April 2016.

Family/private life
providing that a child’s application for entry clearance will be refused where the Secretary of State considers that the sponsor or the sponsor’s partner poses a risk to the child, for the purposes of an application under Appendix FM, or as a fiancé(e), proposed civil partner, spouse, civil partner, unmarried partner, same sex partner, child, parent or adult dependent relative under Part 8, requiring an EEA national / non EEA national with an EEA right to reside in the UK permanently tohold a valid permanent residence document to show permission to remain in the UK indefinitely, in order to be regarded as present and settled in the UK. This change will apply to applications made on or after 19 May 2016.

Tier 1 (Exceptional Talent) of the points-based system
amending the endorsement criteria used by Tech City UK, to better reflect the skills and experience of target applicants who are most likely to add value to the UK digital technology sector.

Tiers 2 and 5 of the points-based system
adding nurses and four digital technology jobs to the Tier 2 shortage occupation list,
changes to clarify the charity worker rules for sponsors and applicants,
setting the annual allocation of places available under the youth mobility scheme for 2016,
minor amendments to the list of government authorised exchange schemes.