Immigration Health Surcharge set to Double

The Government yesterday announced their intention to double the charge to temporary migrants in the UK later this year, increasing the fee for most Immigration categories from £200 per year to £400 per year.

Currently Students and individuals applying for a Tier 5 (Youth Mobility) visa pay £150 per year, which is also due to increase to £300 a year.

Health Minister James O’Shaughnessy said “By increasing the surcharge so that it better reflects the actual costs of using health services, this government is providing an extra £220 million a year to support the NHS.”

We expect this to have a large impact on employers’ ability to bring skilled workers into the UK, with this charge being paid in addition to other fees such as the Immigration Skills Charge and visa application fees.

A family of four coming to the UK on a Tier 2 (General) visa for five years will pay £8,000 for the Immigration Health Surcharge alone.

Who needs to pay the Immigration Health Surcharge?

The Immigration Health Surcharge is paid if:

  • you’re a national of a country outside the European Economic Area (EEA); and
  • you’re applying for a visa or leave to remain to work, study or join your family in the UK for more than 6 months (but you’re not applying to remain in the UK permanently)

The Government has not announced the date the increase will be effective from; however, most fee increases occur around April each year.

Advance planning is recommended to minimise the impact of the increased fees on sponsors and individuals coming to the UK.

How we can help

Please do not hesitate to contact your Magrath Sheldrick representative or write to [email protected] for guidance in respect of any aspect of the Immigration Health Charge and the UK Immigration Rules generally.