Tier 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 Visa in the United Kingdom

Updated on Monday 28th August 2017

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Tier 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 Visa in the United Kingdom Image
UK visas are awarded in accordance with the level of professional specialization of a citizen. This is an important aspect to be taken into consideration when applying for an UK visa. British visas are comprised of several tiers, classified by the level of expertise of a person; for example, Tier 1 is issued for persons with a high degree of specialization, while Tier 5 visa refers to persons seeking for temporary employment in UK. Our immigration solicitors in London can offer assistance to persons who are interested in relocating on a work basis in UK

Tier 1 visa in UK 

Persons who want to relocate to London on a Tier 1 visa basis should know that this type of document is issued only for highly trained persons. The Tier 1 (General) is no longer available for general purposes, as it was closed to applicants living outside UK. The British visa issued on a Tier 1 basis is still available for entrepreneurs or investors or for post study work in UK. The visa is available only for persons with a high degree of specialization, who must obtain at least 75 points in an MBA program or by meeting the following criteria: 

•    qualifications (25-45 points);
•    previous earnings (5- 75 points);
•    UK experience (5 points);
•    age (5-20 points). 

Please note that the Tier 1 visa is available only for citizens outside the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland. 

Tier 2 visa in UK 

Citizens outside EEA can apply for a Tier 2 visa if they are skilled workers who have received a job offer in the UK, which could not have been managed by a local employee. At the same time, the person must also provide documentation on the fact that he/she has received a certificate of sponsorship before applying for a UK visa. Tier 2 is issued for persons who have a score of minimum 60 points (available for intra-company transfers) or 70 (general purposes), which is comprised of: 

•    the presence of a sponsor and a certificate of sponsorship (50 points);
•    English language skills (10 points);
•    available funds (10 points). 

Persons who want to receive a Tier 2 visa can receive assistance on this matter from our UK immigration lawyers

Tier 3 visa in UK 

The Tier 3 visa was designated for low skilled employees needed on the British workforce market when shortages of employees are created in a particular sector, but at the moment, the program has been shut down. 

Tier 4 visa in UK 

This type of visa is available for persons with an age above 16 years old who are enrolled in an educational institution. The Tier 4 visa is available for students outside the EEA area who can speak and write in English; the students must also prove that they have received an invitation to participate in a course in UK. The students can also work in UK under this visa and our immigration lawyers in London can provide you with the employment conditions imposed by the British legislation for students. 

Tier 5 visa in UK

Tier 5 visa is issued for a large category of persons, such as those involved in a youth mobility program (in this particular case, the students are not required to receive a job offer in UK). Other categories, such as persons working in creative industries or sports and charities domains, do require a job offer and a sponsorship from a UK organization. As a general rule, the visa is issued for temporary workers living in UK for up to two years. 

Details about the Tier 1 visa for entrepreneurs

A foreign businessman who wants to relocate to UK and set up a company must comply with the requirements in this matter. For instance, one should provide at least GBP 50,000 representing the minimum share capital for its business. Besides that, the applicants must own most of the shares in the company and need to create full-time positions for future employees, from which at least two workers from the EEA (European Economic Area) are necessary. The knowledge of the English language is also a mandatory request once a candidate applies for a Tier 1 visa for entrepreneurs. It is good to know that this type of document allows the entrepreneur to relocate to the UK with his/her family members.

Details about the Tier 2 visa for skilled workers

A Tier 2 visa for skilled workers is granted for five years and it is necessary for citizens outside EEA of from Switzerland. This type of visa is issued to persons who need to fill certain positions if there is a lack of workers in UK in varied areas. In order to obtain a Tier 2 visa for skilled workers, one should know that details about the sponsorship must be provided. Furthermore, information about the financial situation needs to be offered in form of bank statements to see if the candidate can support himself/herself during the stay in the country. We remind that this kind of visa allows a worker to perform activities in accordance with the position mentioned in the sponsorship certificate and also the possibility of having a second job in the country. He/she can also relocate with the family in the UK, with the help of a Tier 2 visa for skilled workers. Please consider that you cannot have access to public funds with this type of visa and you cannot work until this document is issued by the Immigration Office. The sponsor can apply for a Tier 2 visa for skilled worker on your behalf, but it is suggested to ask for complete legal assistance from our immigration lawyer in UK.

Details about the Tier 4 visa for students

Great Britain is acknowledged for its varied and high standard colleges, where numerous people from EU (European Union) or outside EU decide to attain. Future students who want to join the well-known colleges in UK must apply for a Tier 4 student visa and they need to provide details about their sponsorship, be over 16, and offer details about the financial status to see if they can support themselves during the courses in UK. We remind that the foreign students in UK have the possibility of working in the country, but for no more than 20 hours per week. A Tier 4 visa for students does not allow students to ask for public funds or join a funded school in the UK.

Details about the Tier 5 visa for temporary workers

The Tier 5 visa for temporary workers is available for foreign citizens who come to the country only for a temporary job. This kind of visa comes in varied forms like an international agreement for persons with contracts protected by the universal regulation, for instance, diplomats or employees of foreign governments. The Youth Mobility Scheme is available for citizens from Canada, Japan, Monaco, or Australia who are interested in changing experience in the UK. A Tier 5 visa is also available for religious workers who come to the UK for pastoral or non-pastoral work for only a few days or months. We remind that this type of visa is available for no more than 24 months, but if from varied reasons you might want to prolong your stay in the country, it is necessary to apply for a different type of visa.

If you need further information on the tier system in UK, please feel free to contact our team of immigrations solicitors in London



March 21, 2016

I am a student in New Zealand interested in receiving a Tier 4 visa. I'd like to spend one year in London, UK. I have to add that I received an invitation from two local universities, to join courses lasting for more than 4 months.

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