16 November 2023
Assistant Chief Minister Deputy Lucy Stephenson has issued updated guidance to allow more Islanders to spend time away from Jersey for educational purposes or as the children of those serving in the Government's overseas offices without detrimentally impacting their current or future residential status.
Deputy Stephenson, who has delegated responsibility for matters relating to the Control of Housing and Work (Jersey) Law 2012 (CHWL), has issued amendments on how temporary absences for 'Educational Absences' and 'Overseas Service' will be treated under the CHWL.
The guidance on 'Educational Absences' expands the current provisions beyond those which already relate to students below the age of 25, to assist Islanders wishing to upskill or re-skill as part of lifelong learning, in line with the Government's aims to improve productivity and fill skills gaps.
Under the changes, those with Entitled or Entitled For Work Only status who have been continuously resident in Jersey for a period of at least five years will be able to take up full-time education away from Jersey and have that time outside Jersey considered as continuous ordinary residence.
This means they can continue to build up qualifying time towards a future residential status whilst outside Jersey. This will support those whose study will make a positive contribution to the development of Jersey's economy or the Government's social and environmental aims.
The updated guidance on 'Overseas Service' expands the special provision currently given to children of people serving overseas in His Majesty's Armed Forces, to include the children of people serving in the Government of Jersey's overseas offices.
The children of those serving in the Government of Jersey London Office, the Channel Islands Brussels Office, and the Bureau des Iles Anglo-Normandes will have that time outside Jersey considered as continuous ordinary residence, and be able to build up qualifying time towards a future residential status whilst outside Jersey.
This is intended to avoid any hardship for these children that may be caused by having no or few ties to any jurisdiction.
Deputy Stephenson has also updated the guidance to reflect recent changes relating to 'Enduring relationships', allowing an 'eligible partner' to be treated in a similar manner to a spouse or civil partner.
The guidance has also been updated to add in previously agreed policy changes on 'High Income and High Net Worth Applications for Residential Status' (2(1)(e) applications). This follows a review of 2(1)(e) policies as presented to the Assembly, and its approval in July 2023 of changes to the taxation rules. The new policy includes:
- The agreed increase in the annual minimum tax payable from £170,000 to £250,000
- increases in minimum property prices
- formalising minimum net asset levels at £10m excluding principal place of residence
- removing the ability to purchase and rent vacant properties
- explaining for the sake of clarity existing practices in the event of death or divorce for the surviving civil partner or spouse
- a new provision creating a firm assumption that applicants should purchase property rather than rent.
These changes are all designed to enhance the contribution made by 2(1)(e) applicants and to promote their position as part of our community.
Deputy Stephenson said: "I am pleased to publish these amendments which support those who want to gain new skills, knowledge and experience to assist us in our drive to a more productive economy.
"The updated guidance addresses potential issues faced by the children of those working in our overseas offices and recognises the establishment of 'enduring relationships' within the Control of Housing and Work Law.
"The changes to the 2(1)(e) initiative have already been agreed, and we have now taken the opportunity to include them in the published policy statement. The changes enhance the economic and social benefits to the Island while continuing to value our high value resident community."