The UK New immigration rules What you need to know

On 7 September 2023, the Home Office published a new Statement of Changes to the UK immigration Rules. The statement lists primary adjustments being made in relation to the EU Settlement Scheme (EUSS) and to Electronic Travel Authorisation (ETA) requirements, amongst others. In this insights, we provide an overview of the most pertinent changes.

The UK New immigration rules: what you need to know

The announced changes are wide ranging – some simply introduce new terminology, others clear up omissions or drafting errors in the previous changes or incorporate concessions originally made outside the rules.

We’ve highlighted key changes below, and we’ll be pulling out further detail and implications in future blogs.

What are The UK New immigration rules key changes?

EUSS and EUSS family permits

From 5 October 2023, the changes mean that if your application for the EU Settlement Scheme (EUSS) is denied or your existing EUSS status is cancelled, you won’t have the option to apply for an administrative review. Instead, you will still have the right to appeal the decision, in line with the Citizens’ Rights Agreement.

These changes make the process for challenging a decision more straightforward and consistent with how the rest of the immigration system works, where there is only one option for appeal (no dual right of redress).

Enhancements to the Youth Mobility Schemes

The UK’s existing reciprocal bilateral arrangements with Australia and Canada have been strengthened. The age range has been extended from 18-30 to 18-35, and the length of stay has been increased from 2 to 3 years. Andorra is being added to the list of countries participating in the scheme. These changes will take effect on 31 January 2024.

Changes to the long residence rules

In April 2023, the definition of ‘lawful residence’ for the purposes of long residence was changed to exclude time spent on immigration bail, as a visitor, short-term student or seasonal worker. The rules are being changed to clarify that this exclusion extends to time spent on previous versions of immigration bail (temporary admission and temporary release) and previous visitor, short-term student visa or seasonal worker routes. This change will come into effect on 5 October 2023.

Introduction of Appendix Children

The Home Office is introducing a new appendix that will include common requirements for both children applying as dependants of a lead applicant, and children applying in their own right. From 5 October 2023, it will apply to certain routes and will be extended further in the future.

Introduction of Appendix Returning Resident

The Home Office is adding an Appendix Returning Resident to the Immigration Rules. This is a new appendix being added as part of the simplification process, replacing paragraphs 18, 18A, 19, 19A and 20 of the immigration rules. This part of the Immigration Rules deals with former residents of the UK who are returning to live long-term. This change will take effect on 5 October 2023.


The ETA scheme will be launched in October 2023. The changes will remove the NHS debt as a ground for refusal of an ETA application as systems are not in place for checks on this to be done within the appropriate timeframe, but travellers should be aware that they may still be refused entry at the border for this reason. Changes have also been made to clarify that the ETA exemption for applicants lawfully resident in Ireland who are travelling within the Common Travel Area will require a person aged 16 or above to demonstrate residency in Ireland, if required by a UK official. This change will take effect on 5 October 2023.

English Language Requirement

The Home Office is updating Appendix English Language to allow an applicant in any additional six routes to demonstrate that they meet the English Language requirement if they have a GCSE, A level, Scottish National Qualification at level 4, 5, or Scottish Higher or Advanced Higher in English. The six additional routes are: Appendix Representative of an Overseas Business, Appendix T2 Minister of Religion, Appendix UK Ancestry, Appendix Global Talent, Appendix Domestic Workers in a Private Household and Appendix Hong Kong British National (Overseas). This change will take effect on 5 October 2023.

The Statement of Changes goes on to clarify and align the current Immigration Rules in some detail and, as these are reviewed and analysed, we will be publishing further blogs with additional details.

Gherson’s Immigration Team are highly experienced in advising on UK visa matters. If you have any queries or are interested in talking to us about your specific circumstances please contact us or send us an e-mail.