‘//The Government ministers have plans to increase the Immigration Health Surcharge (IHS) for immigrants from £200/year to£400/year. Government believe that actual cost of patient to the NHS is £1200 approximately. This increase seems increasingly unfair and will have devastating impact on immigrants and their family members. The current system of paying HIS does not differentiate between migrants that are in employment and pay Tax and NI contributions through PAYE. Despite paying Tax and NI Contribution through their wages they still must pay the IHS and most of the Non-EU migrants do not have recourse to public funds too. Which clearly means an immigrant will be paying double towards the Health Services. I have personally calculated how much contribution an average worker pays towards the Health Services through a tax calculation of one of our clients and was shocked after finding out that from his annual income of £21116.12 /year he has paid £3586 tax and NI and from £3586 he has contributed £728 towards the Health Sector.
Picture Source: Annual Tax and NI Contribution letter received by our Migrant client from HMRC.
Again, repeating that he does not have any recourse to public funds. I believe that the increase is extremely unfair, and government need to think about the working-class migrants and migrants with more than 2 family members.
Furthermore, it will affect those British Citizens who have non-Eu family members living abroad and want to sponsor them. For example, under the Appendix FM of Immigration Rules, a family of one main Applicant and 2 dependent children will have to pay almost £3600 which does not include any exchange fee and home office fees. If you see around the globe UK is the only country which see migrants as a money generator and throughout last few years have been charged for the high Home Office fees. I personally believe that increasing the IHS is very harsh and unfair and should therefore not increase as it will have a devastating impact on many skilled workers want to come in the UK under the shortage occupation and other long-term migrants. However, if government still thinks that it is essential to increase the IHS then migrants should have an option to pay on yearly basis or in instalments instead of paying the full costs upfront for the duration of their leave to remain.
I am a practicing Immigration Adviser at AAKWA GROUP and we care about our clients and other migrants who intend to come to the UK and contribute to the society and UK economy. AAKWA Group is regulated by the OISC and authorised to provide immigration services.
Muhammad Atif Chaudary (PGDip, A. NALP)