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“Health surcharge” - the increasing cost of a visa

The government has now confirmed the details and date of introduction of the new “health surcharge”, set to be levied on nationals from outside of the European Economic Area (EEA). Presently such migrants receive free NHS treatment in the same way as permanent residents, but that is all set to change.

From 6 April 2015, non EEA migrants intending to come to the UK for more than 6 months, or those who are presently in the UK and seeking to extend their existing visa arrangements, will be subject to the charge.

Initially the charge will be £200 per migrant (£150 for Tier 4 students) for each year of stay and will be payable at the outset. So, for example, a worker migrant proposing to come to the UK on a 5 year Tier 2 General Visa will have to pay an additional £1,000. A similar charge will be made in respect of any dependents that the migrant has with them.

The government’s stated intention of the surcharge is to raise a £1.7 billion contribution over the next ten years to offset the £2 billion cost per year to the NHS in providing services to overseas visitors and migrants.

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This information is intended as a general discussion surrounding the topics covered and is for guidance purposes only. It does not constitute legal advice and should not be regarded as a substitute for taking legal advice. DWF is not responsible for any activity undertaken based on this information.

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Andrew Chamberlain

Partner - Head of Employment & Chair of the SDE

I am a Partner, the National Head of the Employment Team and the Chair of the Service Delivery Executive (SDE), which is focused on building better solutions for clients.