A Guide To Apply For A UK Skilled Worker Visa
In today’s blog, we will discuss the step-by-step guide to apply for a skilled worker visa.
The UK is among the most sought-after and desirable countries to work in for various reasons. One of those reasons is the availability of multiple opportunities for career growth and a wide range of jobs. But, if you are a non-British/Irish citizen, then you are required to follow specific conditions. After Brexit, these requirements apply to most EU citizens as well.
You should have a visa with work rights to work legally in the UK if you are a non-British/Irish citizen. However, there are some exemptions. For instance, EU Settled citizens are not required to have a visa since the Settlement Scheme includes work rights in the UK.
Different immigration pathways offer a variety of work visas. Each visa has its own criteria and set of requirements, as well as visa conditions that the applicant/visa holder must meet. For those people who want to relocate to the UK specifically for employment reasons, the best choice for them is the Skilled Worker visa.
The Skilled worker visa is issued to candidates with invitations to employment from UK businesses. A UK business looking to hire a foreign worker should be ’licenced’. Meaning that they have the sponsorship licence provided by the Home Office. If a company is willing to hire workers from abroad, they can apply for a sponsorship licence. Once the UK-based employer/business has obtained the sponsorship licence, they can allocate a Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) to the candidate to support their skilled worker visa application. The details in the CoS will include the candidate’s personal information and other essential information regarding the job designation and salary of the candidate.
The skilled worker visa is a pathway to settlement in the UK. This visa has substituted the Tier 2 (General) work visa.
What Is The Eligibility Criteria For Skilled Worker Visa?
The following are the requirements for a Skilled Worker Visa:
- The candidate must work for an employer authorised by the Home Office, meaning they have been provided with a sponsorship licence.
- The candidate should have a Certificate of Sponsorship generated by their employer for them to apply for the Skilled Worker Visa.
- The candidate should be working in a position that is on a list of qualified occupations.
- The candidate should be paid a minimum salary depending on the job role they are offered and the work they will be doing in that role.
- The candidate should be able to prove that they have the knowledge of the English language.
Based on your personal circumstances, you may have to fulfil further requirements.
Immigration lawyers in the UK will be able to help you and your employer with the sponsor licence and the process of the Skilled Worker visa application. They will be better able to guide you and the employer about eligibility criteria and provide you advice on whether you qualify for the visa. The immigration lawyer will collect all the necessary documents and apply on your behalf to the Home Office. The Home Office will then analyse your Skilled Worker Visa application and the sponsorship licence.
For How Long Can You Stay In The UK On Skilled Worker Visa?
The candidate’s period of stay depends on the employer. You might be able to stay for 5 years in the UK. Also, your employer may also ask your immigration lawyer to issue you a Skilled Worker Visa with a timeframe of less than 5 years. If you are planning to stay in the UK permanently, you may be able to switch your Skilled Worker Visa to settle in the UK after 5 years.
How To Apply For A Skilled Worker Visa?
You can apply for a Skilled Worker visa online. If you are on the relevant visa, the visa can be applied for from inside or outside the UK, if you are on the relevant visa. It is important to note that some visa bearers cannot ‘switch’ to the Skilled Worker visa while residing in the UK. If you are unsure about your eligibility, you can get the help of an immigration expert.
If you already have a Skilled Worker visa but it is about to expire soon, you can apply for an extension. In case you are offered a new job, you can apply for a visa with your new employer. Your employer/company should be authorised Skilled Worker sponsor visa licence holders.
Your children or partner can accompany you to the UK as dependents on your skilled worker visa. You can get the help of immigration experts to help you in completing the required forms and applying for the visa for you and your dependants.
What Is The Cost Of Applying For A Skilled Worker Visa?
The charges will differ based on the number of dependants accompanying you. You will be required to pay for each application. You will have to pay for the following charges:
- The application fee is between £625 to £1,423, which is based on your personal situation.
- Immigration health surcharge, which is around £624 per year.
- Further costs include English language test, recognition of qualifications, chest X-rays and translation of documents. The charges for these depend on your specific situation.
- You may also need to show that you have adequate cash in personal savings, which is around £1,270, in case your employer cannot confirm your maintenance
- The fee for an immigration lawyer, if you will be consulting with one.
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