Tier 2 Visa for Skilled Workers in UK

Updated on Saturday 09th December 2017

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The Tier 2 visa for skilled workers in UK is for individuals who have a job offer in the country and will be hired to fill a lack in the UK labor force that cannot be occupied by someone already in the UK. Just like most of UK visas, it applies to citizens from countries outside the European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland. The candidate for this type of visa has to be sponsored by a licensed sponsor prior to applying to come into the country for work. Our immigration solicitors in London are at your disposal if you are interested in a visa for skilled workers in UK.

Duration of stay

The Tier 2 visa for skilled workers is granted for up to five years and 14 days or the time stated on the certificate of sponsorship plus one month. The candidate can apply for a visa extension of maximum another five years, provided that his/her stay is no longer than six years in the UK.

Requirements for the Tier 2 visa for skilled workers in UK

In order to be eligible for the Tier 2 visa for skilled workers in UK, all the following criteria have to be met:

•    the candidate must have a certificate of sponsorship reference number. Our UK immigration solicitor can give you more information on this matter;
•    the applicant is offered a salary of at least GBP 20,800 per year unless certain conditions are imposed;
•    the visa aspirant knows English at a satisfactory level;
•    the candidate owns GBP 945 in savings, in order to show that he/she is able to support himself/herself. However, if the sponsor is “A-rated” and it is mentioned on the sponsorship certificate that the applicant will not claim benefits during his/her stay in the UK, this requirement is not compulsory.

If you do not meet these criteria, our immigration lawyers in London might help you with more information about the rules imposed by the authorities regarding the Tier 2 visa for employees of multinational companies.

What you are allowed to do and what you cannot in UK

With the Tier 2 Visa for skilled workers in UK, you are allowed to:

•    work for your sponsor in the position stated in the sponsorship certificate;
•    perform a second job in the same domain and at the same level as your principal job for maximum 20 hours a week;
•    perform a job that presents a shortage of employees in the UK for maximum 20 hours a week;
•    work as a volunteer;
•    a proof provided that your studies do not interrupt the job you are hired to do;
•    travel overseas and return inside the country;
•    take your family members – husband, wife, partner, a child under 18 years of age or child over 18 if he/she is momentarily in the country as a dependant – with you.

However, with this type of visa you cannot:

•    possess more than 10% of the sponsor’s share (provided you produce more than GBP 155,300 yearly);
•    have access to public funds;
•    begin to work before obtaining the visa;
•    apply for a second job until you have begun working for the company who sponsored you.

Types of Tier 2 visa for skilled workers in UK

Among the important visas which are available for skilled people who want to enter and work in the UK, we mention the following:

•    tier 2 intra-company transfer visa;
•    tier 2 visa for religious workers;
•    tier 2 visa for sportsmen.

It is good to mention that the Tier 2 Shortage Occupations List is available for applicants outside the EU or EEA who want to relocate to UK. Such job offers are not promoted for nationals. One can apply for the above-mentioned category of visa if a job offer has been accepted.  Most of the job offers related to this type of visa are in medicine, science and IT.

How can employers search for skilled workers in UK?

Most companies in UK, especially the large ones which are interested in recruiting skilled workforce outside the EU or EEA and Switzerland can ask for the services offered by a recruitment company. Such employer will act like a sponsor of the skilled worker and before that, the company must meet the criteria related to the Resident Labor Market Test.

Necessary documents when applying for a Tier 2 visa for skilled workers

As it is known, but good to remember, one must have a valid passport or identification card when preparing the documents for the needed visa, in this case, the Tier 2 visa for skilled workers. Additionally, it is necessary to provide details about the financial status, in order for the authorities to make sure that you can properly live in the UK without having to ask and access the public funds. The English language condition should also be taken into consideration because a document or proof of a qualification that provides your skills will be necessary when applying for this kind of visa. Citizens from specific countries might need to make a tuberculosis test.

Our UK immigration lawyers can advise you on how to obtain a Tier 2 visa for skilled workers. If you would like to know more information, please contact us


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