New Ban on Care Worker Dependants in UK

New Ban on Care Worker Dependants in UK


Health and Care Worker visa applicants are no longer be able to include their partner and children as dependants on their visa, following a change in UK rules from 11 March 2024.

The new restrictions apply to individuals applying for sponsored roles as care workers under SOC code 6145 and senior care workers under SOC code 6146.

Care workers who are already sponsored or who have applied for their visa before this date are protected from the change under transitional provisions. Provided they have consistently maintained their status, these individuals can continue working and residing in the UK, have dependants accompany or join them, extend their stay with their current sponsor (regardless of CQC registration), and apply for UK settlement under the same sponsor. If they switch employers after this date, the new sponsor must be CQC registered, but their dependants can still join them.

The following scenarios illustrate the change in rules:


Pre-11 March 2024 Health and Care Worker Visa Applications


Care workers who applied for visas before 11 March 2024 will have their applications assessed under the rules effective as at 10 March 2024. If successful, their dependants can join them in the UK.


Existing Health and Care Worker Visa Holders Seeking Extensions


Workers already in the UK under the applicable codes (6145 or 6146) and who seek extensions after 11 March can have their dependants apply for extensions as well.


Switching Visa Types


Workers on Graduate visas who switch to a Health and Care Worker visa post-March 11 2024 cannot have their dependants stay under their new visa.


Impact of the Change


This measure is part of the Government’s strategy to manage migration more effectively and is likely to result in a decline in Health and Care Worker applications.

Care providers are advised to seek guidance on the impact of the change in rules on their recruitment strategies and sponsored worker management.

In light of the change, family members of Health and Care Worker visa holders coming to the UK under the new rules could explore alternative routes. Spouses or partners could potentially apply for a separate visa category, such as a family visa, if they meet the minimum income requirement, although this has recently seen a significant increase.



Gill Laing is a qualified Legal Researcher & Analyst with niche specialisms in Law, Tax, Human Resources, Immigration & Employment Law.

Gill is a Multiple Business Owner and the Managing Director of Prof Services - a Marketing & Content Agency for the Professional Services Sector.

Legal disclaimer


The matters contained in this article are intended to be for general information purposes only. This article does not constitute legal advice, nor is it a complete or authoritative statement of the law, and should not be treated as such. Whilst every effort is made to ensure that the information is correct, no warranty, express or implied, is given as to its accuracy and no liability is accepted for any error or omission. Before acting on any of the information contained herein, expert legal advice should be sought.

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