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Tier 2 General Extension Frequently asked Questions

You can extend your visa inside the UK before the expiry, as long as you continue to meet the requirements provided you are working for the same employer and holding the same position within the company. You cannot apply for an extension outside of the UK.

What can you do while on Tier 2 visa (General)?

You are allowed to take additional employment that must meet the following requirements:

  • Is outside of their normal working hours;
  • Is no more than 20 hours per week;
  • Is within the same profession at the same professional level as the work for which
  • The Certificate of Sponsorship was issued.
  • You are also allowed to take unpaid voluntary employment.

What cannot you do while on Tier 2 Visa (General)?

You are not allowed to:

- enter self-employment; - set-up a business; - join another business as a director or partner without obtaining permission from the Home Office.

You are also not allowed to hold more than 10% shares in the sponsor company if it is a limited.

Can I switch from Tier 4 (General) to Tier 2 (General)?

The right to switch from Tier 4 to Tier 2 is limited to applicants who have:

  • Successfully completed (with a pass mark) a UK recognised bachelor's degree, master's degree, Postgraduate Certificate in Education or Professional Graduate Diploma of education.
  • For those studying for a PHD, you can apply for a Tier 2 visa if you have completed a minimum of 12 months of study in the UK towards a UK PhD during your current period of leave, or a period of continuous leave which includes your last grant of leave; and
    1. you studied for the eligible award at a UK institution recognised or listed body, or an education provider holding a licence for sponsoring students under Tier 4 of the Points-Based System; and
    2. you make your application for a Tier 2 (General) visa from inside the UK.

If you meet the requirements above for switching into the Tier 2 category, you will not be subjected to the Resident Labour Market Test which is the requirement to advertise the job appropriately to the UK labour marker before offering the position to a non-EEA national.

There are various Certificates of Sponsorship (COS) that can be applied for on the SMS system; in the case of an applicant switching to Tier 2 from inside the UK, an application for an unrestricted COS will be made. The normal formalities in qualifying for the visa, as included in the codes of practice and cited above, must also be met before applying.

Can I switch from Tier 1 (Post-Study Work) (PSW) to Tier 2 (General)?

If you have a Tier 1 PSW visa, your employer can apply for you to have an unrestricted COS but only if you meet the general requirements of the Code of Standards for your specified job.

If you require assistance with your immigration matter, please contact our advisers on 02037442797. Alternatively drop us an email on

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The team of lawyers at Reiss Edwards are very professional and friendly people. Their experience in and around UK immigration law is quite extensive; be sure that you application is in safe and competent hands. My immigration matter was an indefinite leave to remain application based on Tier 1 on a self-employment basis. The immigration lawyers at Reiss Edwards made sure that the application was perfect and ready to be accepted. I got a positive decision and I recommend them highly for anyone who needs a UK immigration help.
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I used Reiss Edwards’ immigration lawyers to assist with my immigration matter and that of my family. It was an EX1 application. They dealt with the matter properly and even when complications were coming up from the Home Office, they helped resolve the issue properly. They are very professional and are very popular in London. I am happy to have worked with them.

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It's a shame that you dont have an 'Excellent' star rating on here, as my experience with Reiss Edwards is nothing short of an excellent rating. They handled my application for an Indefinite Leave to remain in April 2014 and did my husband's one very recently including my daughter. Every time i have approached them, they have continued to treat me with courtesy, respect and patience. Amar was indeed a very thorough and professional gentleman. He is very knowledgeable, corporative and engaging. He responded to my emails, calls and enquiries promptly. He was always reassuring. I could not have asked for a better Immigration service.

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Kind regards
Nancy Jacquard

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