Until recently applicants for entry clearance have been issued with visa stamps in their passports and Biometric Residence Permits (BRPs) have been issued on visa renewal applications. Under the new rules, applicants will be issued with BRPs on entry clearance.
A BRP has a standard credit card size (86mm x 54mm) format and contains a chip to make it more secure against forgery and abuse. The new regime is being introduced in stages and is due to be completed by end of July 2015. Applicants in Pakistan, India, China and some other countries are already subject to the new rules. The international roll out schedule can be found here.
Under the new regime, successful applicants will be issued with 30 day short term visas in their passports to allow them to come to the UK to collect their BRPs. BRPs should be collected from Post Office within 10 days of applicants arrival in the UK. Applicants will receive a decision letter which will tell them from which Post Office they must collect their BRP from.
As a result of the new regime, employers will need to carry out an initial right to work check when the 30 day visa is issued, and a further right to work check once BRP is collected. Employers should therefore amend their policies to ensure that they remain compliant with the immigration rules.