UK Border Agency has temporarily exempted from cooling off rules the students who worked as interns in the UK last summer and want to return to a graduate job with the same company.
Cooling off rules, introduced to Tier 2 (General) in February this year, mean those who have left Tier 2 need to wait a year from the end of their last application before they can apply again through that route.
To qualify for the temporary exemption, which is available until 31st October, you must: be sponsored by the same company where you worked as an intern in the summer of 2011; have previously been granted permission under Tier 2 (General) with that company for a temporary job lasting no more than four months as an intern or a summer associate; have completed a degree course within 18 months of your application; be returning to the UK on a graduate trainee scheme; and be making a Tier 2 (General) application with a start date on the certificate of sponsorship of 31st October 2012 or before.
Tier 5 is the most appropriate route for internships and a number of Tier 5 (Government authorised exchange) schemes are available. Employers are encouraged to use these in future if they are concerned about the impact of the cooling off period on their interns.
The Tier 2 policy guidance and sponsor guidance will be updated by 14th June 2012.