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Manx Points Based System. Andrew Stewart and Nigel Walker Department of Economic Development. What is PBS?. System that controls Immigration from outside of the EEA and Switzerland Based on the requirements of the economy There are different ‘Tiers’ within the PBS

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manx points based system

ManxPoints Based System

Andrew Stewart and Nigel Walker

Department of Economic Development

what is pbs
What is PBS?
  • System that controls Immigration from outside of the EEA and Switzerland
  • Based on the requirements of the economy
  • There are different ‘Tiers’ within the PBS
  • Tier 2 will replace Overseas Labour Scheme (OLS)
  • PBS already in operation in the UK
pbs the tiers
PBS – The Tiers
  • Tier 1 - for highly skilled workers, such as scientists and entrepreneurs (already operational in the IOM);
  • Tier 2 - for skilled workers with a job offer, such as teachers and nurses;
  • Tier 3 - for low-skilled workers filling specific temporary labour shortages, such as construction workers for a particular project (this tier is currently suspended in the UK and the IOM);
  • Tier 4 - for students;
  • Tier 5 - for temporary workers, such as musicians coming to play in a concert, and participants in the youth mobility scheme.
tier 5
Tier 5
  • Temporary workers
        • Creative and Sporting
        • Charity Workers
        • Religious Workers
        • Government Authorised Exchange
        • International Agreement
  • Youth Mobility Scheme
      • Japan, Canada, New Zealand and Australia
tier 2 skilled workers
Tier 2 – Skilled Workers
  • General
  • Minister of Religion
  • Sportsperson
  • Intra Company Transfer
tier 2 minister of religion
Tier 2 (Minister of religion)

This category is for people who want to take up employment or posts or roles within their faith communities in the IoM as:

  • ministers of religion undertaking preaching and pastoral work;
  • missionaries; or
  • members of religious orders.
tier 2 sportsperson
Tier 2 (Sportsperson)

The sportsperson category is for elite sports people and coaches who are internationally established at the highest level, and will make a significant contribution to the development of their sport.

tier 2 intra company transfer
Tier 2 (Intra company transfer)

This category is for employees of multi-national companies who are being transferred by their overseas employer to an IoM branch of the organisation, either on a long-term basis or for frequent short visits. There are three sub-categories:

  • Established staff - this route is for established, skilled employees to be transferred to the IoM branch of their organisation to fill a post that cannot be filled by a settled worker
  • Graduate trainee - this route allows the transfer of recent graduate recruits to an IoM branch of the organisation, for training purposes
  • Skills transfer - this route allows the transfer of new recruits to an IoM branch of the organisation to acquire the skills and knowledge that they will need overseas, or to impart their specialist skills or knowledge to the IoM workforce.
tier 2 general
Tier 2 (General)

Is for people coming to the IoM with a skilled job offer to fill a gap in the workforce that cannot be filled by a worker from the IoM, UK or EEA.

Before you apply under the skilled worker category (Tier 2 General), you must have:

  • a sponsor; and
  • a valid certificate of sponsorship.

The job must also attract an appropriate salary and the role must be at S/NVQ level 3 or above.

employers role
Employers Role
  • The PBS places greater emphasis on the role and responsibility of employers
  • Employers need to apply for a Licence in order to be able to issue certificates of sponsorship
  • Employers need to satisfy themselves that the applicant meets the points criteria prior to issuing the certificate of sponsorship
  • Employers must keep full, detailed records including copies of documents etc
obtaining a sponsor licence
Obtaining a Sponsor Licence

Employers will apply to the Department of Economic Development who will consider applications based on three main principles:

  • Is the applicant a genuine organisation operating lawfully in the Isle of Man?
  • Is the applicant dependable and reliable?
  • Is the applicant capable of carrying out its duties as a sponsor?

Employers will need to identify how many certificates of sponsorship they are likely to require each year.

obtaining a sponsor licence1
Obtaining a Sponsor Licence
  • you must be a genuine organisation or sole trader operating legally in the Isle of Man; 
  • there must be no evidence that you are a threat to immigration control - we look at the history and background of your organisation and key personnel;
  • you must nominate a key contact and an authorising officer
  • you must be able to comply with your sponsor duties - we look at your processes such as your human resource (HR) systems to make sure you can carry out your duties;
  • you must send all your supporting documents when applying.
sponsor duties
Sponsor Duties

A licensed sponsor must comply with their duties in relation to:

  • Record Keeping
  • Reporting
  • Compliance
record keeping
Record Keeping

You must keep the following records or documents, and be prepared to give them to our officials if asked:

  • a photocopy or electronic copy of each sponsored migrant's passport or immigration status document (and their identity card for foreign nationals, if they have one), showing evidence of their entitlement to work or study including the length of their permission to stay in the IoM
  • each sponsored migrant's contact details (address, telephone number, mobile telephone number), which must be kept up to date

You must report the following information or events about sponsored migrants to us within 10 working days:

  • If they do not turn up for their first day at work
  • If they are absent from work for more than 10 working days
  • If their contract of employment or registration ends (including if they resign or are dismissed)
  • If you stop sponsoring them for any other reason (for example, if they move into a immigration category with a different sponsor or one that that does not need a sponsor, or their permission to stay in the IoM ends)
  • If there are any significant changes in their circumstances - for example, a change of job or salary
  • If you have any information which suggests that they are breaching the conditions of their leave


  • If there are any significant changes in your circumstances (for example, if you stop trading or become insolvent, substantially change the nature of your business, are involved in a merger or are taken over), you must tell us within 28 calendar days.

You must comply with the immigration laws and meet the following obligations:

  • you must make sure the migrant who is coming to work is legally allowed to do the job, and has the right registration or professional accreditation where needed by law, and keep a copy of the registration document or certificate which you can give us if we ask. For example, if the migrant is coming to work as a doctor, you must make sure they have the right registration to allow them to practice as a doctor in the IoM;
  • you must not employ someone whose immigration status (or lack of status) does not allow them to do the job they are applying for, and you must stop employing someone who stops being allowed to work for any reason;
  • you must only assign certificates of sponsorship to those who, to the best of your knowledge, meet the requirements of the tier or category they are applying under specified in the immigration rules, and who are likely to meet the conditions of their permission to enter or stay in the IoM.
rating a sponsor
Rating a Sponsor

The Department will determine an application for a sponsorship licence and may either:

  • Award an A-rating
  • Award a B-rating
  • Refuse the application

A B-rating indicates some concern over the sponsors ability to comply with the rules and will result in an agreed action plan


Applicants are awarded points based on their:

  • qualifications;
  • future expected earnings;
  • sponsorship;
  • English language skills; and
  • available maintenance (funds).

A total of 70 points is required as an absolute minimum.

50 pts required

10 pts required

10 pts required

shortage of occupation list
Shortage of Occupation List

If an occupation is on the shortage occupation list, it means there are not enough resident workers to fill the available jobs in that particular occupation.

If a migrant comes to the UK under Tier 2 (General) to do skilled work that is on the shortage occupation list, they will get all the points they need to apply (except the points for English language and maintenance) - they will not need to prove their prospective earnings or qualifications.

resident labour market test
Resident Labour Market Test

If you are recruiting for a skilled job that is not on the list of shortage occupations you must demonstrate that there are no suitably qualified workers in the IoM, UK or EEA who can fill the job.

  • You must advertise the job for a period of not less than 28 days.
  • You may use:
      • Job Centre
      • Internet
      • Newspapers of Professional Publications
      • Recruitment Agencies

Other recruitment methods such as ‘Milkrounds’ of Rolling programmes are sometimes permissible.

  • Sponsors Licence (Valid for up to 4 yrs)
    • Small companies up to 50 employees and charities - £300
    • Medium and Large companies over 50 employees - £1000
  • Certificates of Sponsorship (Valid for up to 3 yrs)
    • £170
  • Action plan for B-rated sponsors
    • £600
certificate of sponsorship
Certificate of Sponsorship
  • Licensed Sponsors can issue ‘Certificates’ once they are satisfied that the migrant meets all of the eligibility criteria
  • It is a ‘virtual’ Certificate which will be represented by a unique number
  • Migrant will supply this number as part of their application for entry into the IoM
  • A certificate of sponsorship does not guarantee entry into the IoM. Immigration will make the final decision.