Moving to the UK? Sit a language test.


Looking to move your family across to London from Italy? Wanting to swap the delicious Italian cuisine for some traditional British fish & chips? If so, there’s a new law hitting next month so here’s want you need to know.

Following a few shaky months after the Brexit decision, a new requirement will be affecting the country as of October 2016. It will now state that all those people who entered the UK on the five-year spousal settlement programme will have to sit two language tests halfway through the five-year period. For those who fail the tests at the two-and-a-half-year mark, they could potentially run into a few issues, which is why it’s good to be aware of the change now.

National partners and parents on the family route will now need to pass a speaking and listening test at level A2 in order to qualify. The guidelines given state that, in order to reach this level, a person must be able to ‘extract important information on short radio broadcasts, such as the weather forecast, traffic reports, concert announcements or sports results’ if the presenter talks clearly. Some of the specifics of this can be slightly confusing, for instance, there may be a struggle with pronouncing the name of one of the singers from the concert announcement or an area in London.

If you’re one of the thousands of Italians who have already made the move on the family visa, the aim of this A2 requirement is to help you to become more fluent in English over time as part of the government’s new manifesto commitment. It basically has been emplaced to help you better learn the language, allowing your family to experience a smoother transition when integrating into the local community so that you can easily enter into conversation with a passer-by or the cashier at the supermarket. It is believed that this step with help to create a friendlier atmosphere in the boroughs throughout England and London.

In light of this change, the UK government recognises that those affected will need a good amount of time to prepare for the new tests, which is why they have been running the tests over the summer. However, that time is now drawing to a close so it’s time to get sorted before you have to apply for further leave to remain (ILR).

Moving to a new location is enough hassle as it is so it’s good to get this sorted as quickly as possible so you don’t run into any problems as you’re settling in. You should start by looking into the UK Home Office website for more information or by contacting an immigration service so you’re fully informed on the requirements of the test and what you need to do before the deadline hits.

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