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Forward thinking businesses aim to attract only the best talent the world has to offer so as to strengthen and add further value to their palette. In a global state like the UK, it is important that businesses find it relatively easy to attract and retain the highest level of talent to maintain their position as the global economic hub. Key sectors within the economy that must be open to global talent include all professional, technological and medical services.

Sustained business growth in a contemporary world requires the most talented and skilled workers to help drive quality and innovation. Globalisation has further lent a helping hand to businesses, such that they are able to source their talent from a global market place.

The UK (as a leading economy in the world) is no exception. The Tier 2 visa category has been designed as a Points Based system to allow foreign skilled workers take up skilled jobs in UK based firms.

At Reiss Edwards, our highly experienced and qualified UK immigration lawyers can help your company reach its full potential if you need to recruit workers from outside the UK. We have an expert team of business immigration and Tier 2 visa lawyers who specialise in global and corporate immigration.

Tier 2 (General) Visa

Following the closure of the Tier 1 General route, the Tier 2 visa category has now become the major work visa category. It benefits workers looking to apply for long term employment (General), those wanting to transfer from a company based overseas to a company in the UK (Intra-company Transfer), sports people involved at a high level in their sport (Sportsperson), and religious workers (Minister of Religion).

It is important to note that you will be required to obtain a certificate of sponsorship to be able to apply for a leave to enter or remain via any of the aforementioned categories. It is classed as a PBS immigration route and would require applicants to score at least 70 points to qualify. Applicants will also need to meet the English language requirements alongside the maintenance requirements.

Tier 2 Visa Application

To apply for a Tier 2 work visa, you must have been offered work by an employer who has a valid Tier 2 Sponsor Licence. The role must be one above NQF Level 6 and the salary on offer must be at the appropriate level.

The Home Office have published a list of sponsorable job roles in the UK alongside their appropriate salary levels. The Home Office follows the salary requirements in a strict manner, as your Tier 2 visa application will be refused if the job you are being offered does not meet the stipulated salary requirements.

Click here to find the salary requirements for sponsorable roles in the UK. Sponsorable roles are roles at or above NQF Level 6.

Tier 2 Visa Extension

The Tier 2 visa is normally issued for 3 years, after which time you may be eligible to apply for a Tier 2 visa extension. Your extension application will depend on whether your current employer is willing to continue having you in that role, while also maintaining the appropriate salary.

Cost of a Tier 2 Visa

The Tier 2 visa application fees include the following:

  1. Home office fees
  2. IHS Fees
  3. Skills charge
  4. Sponsor Licence fee
  5. Legal fees

The Sponsor Licence fees and Skills Charge are payable only by the employer. Also, the sponsor licence fees only matter when the employer does not have an existing sponsor licence.

Tier 2 Entry Clearance Application - Out-of-Country

A restricted Certificate of Sponsorship is usually required for entry clearance as a Tier 2 General Migrant unless the job is stated on the Shortage of Occupations List, or, alternatively, if the migrant will be considered as a "high-earner" with a salary on offer of at least £159,600 gross per annul.

The application for entry clearance can only be made after the following are satisfied:

  1. The sponsor obtains the sponsorship licence (A-Rated)
  2. Resident Labour Market test - by placing adverts on two advertising platforms for 28 days
  3. A Certificate of Sponsorship is issued and assigned to the migrant

The entry clearance application requires the migrant to satisfy the following requirements:

  • Appropriate Salary - this must be at least £30,000 or the minimum salary as per the relevant Standard Occupational Code (SOC Code) which closely matches the job role
  • Appropriate Level - a migrant can only be sponsored in a skilled job at or above Regulated Qualifications Level (RQF) 6. The only exception to this is if the code falls in one of the creative sector Standard Occupational Codes
  • English Language - at level B1
  • Maintenance - must either be certified by the sponsor company or provide evidence that the migrant has, in their personal account, funds amounting to at least £945, held for a minimum period of 90 consecutive days

Tier 2 General Annual Limit - Restricted Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS)

Certificate of Sponsorship available under the Tier 2 (General) visa is limited in number on an annual basis. This limitation is applicable to individuals who seek entry clearance under the Tier 2 (General) Category, as well as individuals who make applications to switch as a dependent of a Tier 4 (General) student into the Tier 2 (General) category from within the UK. These are referred to as Restricted Certificates of Sponsorship.

Individuals who seek entry into the UK tend to take up vacant positions with a £150,000 salary or more, whilst other applications within the UK (apart from the Tier 4 dependants who intend to switch) are not influenced by the limit. In this circumstance, the Certificate of Sponsorship is referred to as unrestricted and can be assigned by the sponsors without initially making an application for authorisation.

Tier 2 Leave Conditions

It is important to note that successful Tier 2 General applications will surmount to the applicant being offered leave for up to 3 years, with the potential of the leave being extended for an additional 3 years. The individual is not permitted to apply again to return to the UK under this category until the elapse of 12 months after which the previous Tier 2 leave had expired. This is also applicable in situations where the individual has been on the Tier 2 visa for less than 6 years. However, in a situation where the individual leaves the job held with the Tier 2 Sponsor, they should ensure the sponsor passes the information across to the UKBA so that the leave will be curtailed. Note also, that the 12-month period begins from the date of expiry of the individual's leave.

Challenging Refusal of a Tier 2 Visa

In a situation where the individual's application was rejected, the individual can choose to oppose the decision by making a request for an Administrative Review to the Entry Clearance Manager (ECM). However, if the decision is also held by the Entry Clearance Manager (ECM) then the individual can challenge it by making an appeal through a Judicial Review in High Court.

What are the Minimum Points Required to Approve your Tier 2 Visa Application?

Tier 2 visa applicants must score a minimum of 70 points to be eligible for a visa. The summary of the points are as follows:

ConditionPoints
Valid CoS30
Appropriate Salary20
English language requirement10
Maintenance funds10

However, if you need to employ someone from outside the UK, you will need to apply for a restricted Certificate of Sponsorship. It is important to note that the points gained from assigning Certificates of Sponsorships may vary depending on the type of job.

See the table below for additional information:

Type of jobPointsSalary
Points
Shortage Occupation  130£100,000 to £159,599.99 60
£75,000 to £99,999.99 55
PhD level occupation code listed in Table 1 of Appendix J of the Immigration Rules  75£70,000 to £74,999.99 50
£65,000 to £69,999.99 45
£60,000 to £64,999.99 40
£55,000 to £59,999.99 35
£50,000 to £54,999.99 30
Resident Labour Market Test met by the 'Milkround' provisions and the individual being sponsored meets the 'post study work' provisions.   30£45,000 to £49,999.99 25
Job passes Resident Labour Market test or an exception applies  20£45,000 to £49,999.99 25
£44,000 to £44,999.99 24
£43,000 to £43,999.99 23
£42,000 to £42,999.99 22
£41,000 to £41,999.99 21
£40,000 to £40,999.99 20
£39,000 to £39,999.99 19
£38,000 to £38,999.99 18
£37,000 to £37,999.99 17
£36,000 to £36,999.99 16
£35,000 to £35,999.99 15
£34,000 to £34,999.99 14
£33,000 to £33,999.99 13
£32,000 to £32,999.99 12
£31,000 to £31,999.99 11
£30,000 to £30,999.99 10
£29,000 to £29,999.99 9
£28,000 to £28,999.99 8
£27,000 to £27,999.99 7
£26,000 to £26,999.99 6
£25,000 to £25,999.99 5
£24,000 to £24,999.99 4
£23,000 to £23,999.99 3
£22,000 to £22,999.99 2
£20,800 to £21,999.99 1

Switching into the Tier 2 General Visa

An individual who is already residing in the UK under a visa category which allows that person to switch into the Tier 2 General category, is entitled to apply for residence as a Tier 2 General migrant from within the UK. The individual is, however, expected to fulfil all applicable criteria inclusive of any other stipulation with regards to switching into the Tier 2 General category from the individual's current visa status. For the individual to be eligible to apply for leave from within the UK, the applicant must be issued an Unrestricted Certificate of Sponsorship. For more information on the Tier 2 General Category, please refer to the Tier 2 General Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) at the bottom of this article.

Who Can Switch into a Tier 2 General Category from Inside the UK?

If an individual is issued (or was previously issued) a leave of entry in any one of the below listed categories, then they can apply to switch into the Tier 2 General Category from within the UK:

  • Any Tier 1 category;
  • Tier 2 (General);
  • Tier 2 (Intra-Company Transfer: Established Staff) if you are applying to change sponsor;
  • Tier 2 (Intra-Company Transfer), under the rules in place before 6 April 2010 if you are applying to change sponsor;
  • Tier 2 (Sportsperson);
  • Tier 2 (Minister of Religion);
  • Tier 4 (General) student;
  • Tier 5 (Temporary Worker) in the Creative and Sporting sub-category, for a job as a professional footballer switching into Tier 2 (Sportsperson) only;
  • Dependant partner of a Tier 4 student;
  • Highly Skilled Migrant Programme;
  • Innovator;
  • Fresh Talent: Working in Scotland Scheme;
  • International Graduates Scheme (or its predecessor the Science and Engineering Graduate Scheme);
  • Business and Commercial work permits (except multiple entry work permits) including Intra-Company Transfer work permits;
  • Sports and Entertainment work permits (except multiple entry work permits);
  • Jewish Agency Employee;
  • Member of the Operational Ground Staff of an Overseas-owned Airline;
  • Minister of Religion, Missionary or Member of a Religious Order;
  • Overseas Qualified Nurse or Midwife;
  • Person Writing Up a Thesis;
  • Postgraduate Doctor or Dentist;
  • Representative of an Overseas Business;
  • Representative of an Overseas Newspaper, News Agency or Broadcasting Organisation;
  • Student;
  • Student Nurse;
  • Student Re-Sitting an Examination;
  • Student Union Sabbatical Officer.

Switching from a Tier 4 General Student to a Tier 2 General

An individual wishing to make a switch from the Tier 4 General Student category into the Tier 2 General can do so if the following requirements are fulfilled:

  • The individual must have excelled and successfully completed a bachelor's or master's degree, post graduate certificate in Education or a Professional Graduate Diploma of Education acknowledged by the UK; or has spent a minimum of 12 months in the United Kingdom on study towards earning a PhD in the UK during the present leave period or a continuous leave inclusive of the previously issued leave of entry;
  • The individual has studied for an eligible award at an institution recognised by the UK or a listed body; or an educational institution that holds a permit to take up sponsorship for Tier 4 Points-Based system students;
  • The individual is making the application from within the UK

If the Tier 2 sponsor fulfils the requirements for switching as mentioned above, they would be free from fulfilling the Resident Labour Market Test. The applicant will make use of the Unrestricted Certificate of Sponsorship issued to them by the employer to make the application. However, it is expected that the individual's working position and salary level be in line with the criteria for the Code of Practice.

Switching from a Tier 1 PSW to a Tier 2 General

An individual who has been granted entry into the UK on a Tier 1 Post Study Work visa can make an application to switch into the Tier 2 General from within the UK. In this category it is expected that the employer makes available an unrestricted Certificate of Sponsorship which the applying individual would use whilst making the Tier 2 General application. However, it is expected that the individual's working position and salary level be in line with the criteria for Code of Practice.

Tier 2 Visa to Dependent Visa

Tier 2 visa migrants can switch from their current visas to become dependants to any visa categories in-country. Therefore, it is not necessary for them to leave the country to make an application to switch their visas.

Tier 2 Work Visa Extension

An individual who resides in the United Kingdom as a Tier 2 General migrant can seek to extend their stay from within the country, either before the authorised permit has expired or if the applicant is changing job (alongside attaining sponsorship from a different sponsor of the Tier 2 category). This application can only be made from within the United Kingdom.

Change of Employment Applications

If an individual seeks to change employer, they must make an application for a change of employer. The applicant is then expected to possess a new Certificate of Sponsorship as well as fulfil the points criteria.

The applicant is also required to apply for a change of employment if they are still with the same employer (subject to exceptions).

When Can I Apply to Renew or Extend my Tier 2 Visa?

Technically, you can renew your Tier 2 visa anytime; however, you'd stand to gain no strategic advantage if your renewal application expires.

As a firm, our advice would be to submit a renewal application 28 days before your current visa expires. If you submit a renewal application in a significant amount of time before your current one expires, the Home Office will process it as normal and you may end up with a timeframe of less than 5 years. Remember, also, that you must have been in the UK for at least 5 years before you qualify for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR). Any time shorter than that may result in you not hitting the 5 years required for ILR.

Therefore, we suggest that you apply for your Tier 2 visa renewal or extension at least 28 days before your current (Tier 2) visa expires.

ILR Tier 2 General

If you are looking to make an application for ILR based on being on a Tier 2 General visa for 5 years, please give us a call now on 020 3744 2797. As a rule, you must first and foremost have lived in the country for at least 5 years continuously under the Tier 2 visa category.

To ensure a successful ILR application, you will need to show you have actually been working in the UK throughout the 5-year period as a Tier 2 migrant and your current employer is your sponsor. In addition, you must show that you are not only currently in employment, but you are still needed on the job. The employer will need to formally verify this in a letter as part of the necessary supporting documents.

We would normally recommend you get professional help/advice for regulated immigration lawyers if you are looking to apply for a Tier 2 ILR. The application form to make this application is the Form SET (O).

Applying for a Tier 2 Dependant Visa

Those who classify as a dependant include a husband/wife, civil partner, unmarried partner, same-sex partner, or child (under the age of 18 years) of a main applicant.

It is important to note that dependants must be over the age of 18 years, except for child dependants. However, children who are over the age of 18 may still qualify to apply as child dependants if they became 18 in the UK whilst on a PBS dependant visa.

Entry Clearance as a PBS Dependent of a Tier 2 General Migrant

If you have been granted leave to remain as a Tier 2 General migrant, your dependants can apply with you. Also, if you are looking to submit an entry clearance application as a Tier 2 general migrant, you may apply with your dependents as well.

Switching into PBS Dependant Visa as a Dependant of Tier 2 General Migrant

The immigration rules have and will continue to be met with several reforms and changes. The rules now allow for applications to be made within the country to switch into a PBS Dependant as a Tier 2 General migrant. The exceptions to this include where the applicant is currently in the UK as a visitor and where the applicant is on temporary admission or release.

The age of the dependant as highlighted above also applies to switching.

Extension of Stay as a PBS Dependant of a Tier 2 General Migrant

If you are currently in the UK as a dependant of a Tier 2 General Migrant, you may be able to extend your stay as a dependant of a Tier 2 migrant if you continue to meet the requirements. Importantly, your extension will be in line with that of the main applicant.

ILR as PBS Dependant of Tier 2 General Migrant

If you have been granted leave to remain as a PBS Dependant of a Tier 2 General prior to the 9th of July 2012, you will be able to apply for ILR if you have resided in the UK for at least 2 years as a PBS Dependant. Importantly, the main applicant must have either been a settled person or has lodged an ILR application

However, for applications made after the 9th of July, PBS Dependants will need to have resided in the UK for at least 5 years as a PBS Dependant of a Tier 2 General migrant.

Can You Get Citizenship in the UK After a Tier 2 Visa?

You will be eligible to apply for a British passport (citizenship) one year after holding an ILR status in the UK. This means you will qualify to apply for British citizenship 6 years after your initial Tier 2 visa grant.

It is important to note that your British citizenship application is not really linked or directly related to your Tier 2 visa, but rather is based on you having held ILR status for one year.

How Much Will the Whole Tier 2 Visa Application Process Cost?

The spiralling cost of Tier 2 visa applications is aimed at achieving two things:

1. Ensuring that more employers are priced out of it, meaning that employers will only employ migrants when they really need to 

2. Acting as a revenue generator for the Home Office

Earlier this year, the Home Office announced that the price changes were necessary to ensure that the Home Office achieves a self-funding system, whilst it continues to deliver a high level of competitive service which continues to appeal to businesses and talents.

Cost for the Tier 2 migrant

Fees Description
Amount
The Tier 2 visa application form £575
NHS (IHS) Surcharge - Fees paid upfront for the duration of the visa £200
Priority service from inside the UK £500
Priority service from inside the UK - Weekends and out of office hours £563
Priority postal service £300
Priority service from outside the UK £460
Super priority service form outside the UK £750
Tier 2 ILR application £2,389
Tier 2 migrant naturalising as a British citizen £1,236

Cost for the Employer

Fees Description
Amount
Sponsor licence application fee (large organisations) £1,475
Sponsor licence application fee (small organisation) £536
Assigning a Certificate of sponsorship £199 (per worker)
Immigration skill charge (large organisations) £1,000 (per worker)
Immigration skill charge (small businesses and charities) £364 (per worker)

Maximum Stay Outside the UK

The rules specify that a Tier 2 migrant must not have been absent from the UK for more than 180 days during any 12-month period within a continuous period of 5 years. The end date of the continuous period will be considered as ending on whichever is the most beneficial to the applicant.

Where the absences are work-related, these must be confirmed by the employer in writing. The letter from the employer must detail the purpose and period of absences, including any periods of annual leave.

Where there is a long period of absence from the UK, there must be a valid reason for such. If the reason is not work-related, it must be considered "serious and compelling", and a detailed explanation must be provided in writing by the applicant, as well as any relevant supporting documents.

Do absences for the main applicant differ from absences for dependants?

The residential requirement for main applicants has been in place since the category was established. The rules, however, did not confirm that dependants were subject to this same requirement for years until 11 January 2018 when the rules were amended to include dependants. The effect, however, is not retrospective and only absences incurred after 11 January 2018 will count towards the 180 days.

Tier 2 Visa Lawyers London

Our team of specialist Tier 2 visa lawyers can advise you on how best to prepare your Tier 2 visa application. We will advise you on all documents required to ensure a successful visa application.Contact us today if you require professional advice. Our business immigration lawyers are based in Central London and can offer a free initial consultation over the phone. You can reach us on 02037442797 or send us an email on info@reissedwards.co.uk

Frequently asked questions (FAQ)

Our price ranges from £1000 to £4000 depending on whether you are applying alone or with dependants; and also if we would also be advising on your sponsor licence application as well.
I'm currently on a tier 5 visa and considering switching to a tier 2 uk visa (general). I'm planning to apply for a part time 26hrs/week (35000 salary) and locum for the other 2 days. I know i'm unable to open a limited company or be a sole trader in the UK but is there anything stopping me from opening an isle of man company (as it isn't the UK) to locum through for my 20 hrs /week secondary work?
This enquiry has been dealt with in a private email by one of our tier 2 visa lawyers
This visa category is for non-EEA nationals who have received job offers to take up professional positions that cannot be filled by workers in the UK.
The labour market test can be said to mean a procedure which an employer is mandated to follow before offering employment to an individual who is not residing full-time in the United Kingdom, if they can evince that there is no suitable resident worker who can take up the jobr.
For the employee to employ you to take up a job that is not in the shortage occupation list, they will be required to provide proof that there is no resident worker, citizen in the UK or European Economic Area (EEA) suitable to take the job. The employer is expected to adhere with the resident labour market test before issuing a Certificate of Sponsorship to you. If you are a tier 1 PSW visa or Tier 4 Student visa holder intending to switch into the Tier 2 General category you will be excluded from the labour market test if you have a valid leave and fulfill the criteria to switch into the Tier 2 General category.
It is required that you make a score of 10 points for English Language. You are entitled to get points if you can evince that you are a citizen of an Anglophone (English-speaking) nation; or you have succeeded in an adequate English Language Examination authorized by the Home Office UKBA; or you have a degree that was lectured in English Language which is also equal to a bachelor's degree in the United Kingdom. You can automatically fulfill the requirements for English Language and earn points without requiring further proof if:
  • You were issued entry into the United Kingdom formerly in any the following categories: Tier 1 (General) or Tier 1 (Entrepreneur), as a businessperson, a work permit holder, a representative of a foreign country's newspaper, news agency or broadcasting firm, an operational ground staff of a foreign owned airline, or a Jewish agency employee;
  • you were granted authority to stay under the Highly skilled migrant programme after the 7th of November 2006;
  • you seek for an extension of stay having previously been granted authority to reside under the Tier 2 category, and therefore proof that you fulfill the English Language requirement have already been given to the authorizing body.
  • You are making the application because you switched jobs and as such proof that you fulfill the requirements for Tier 2 English Language have already been given to the authorizing body.
  • You were issued authority to reside previously as a minister of religion on or after the 23rd of August 2004; and you are making the application because you have switched jobs.
The Certificate of Sponsorship can be said to be a 'virtual document' that is given to a migrant by a licensed sponsor (employer). The Certificate of Sponsorship number is required to be provided by the person whilst making an application for authorization to take up job in the United Kingdom under the Tier 2 General category.
You are permitted to take up additional work as long as:
  • You will still work in the same sector and level;
  • Your work on the jobs does not exceed 20 hours weekly;
  • Your working time in the job is outside that contained in the Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) you were issued.
You are permitted to take up charity work but are not allowed to received payment for the job; payment for reasonable expenses is however permitted for charity work.
This can be said to be an official listing of specified work types that do not have sufficient resident employees to take up the available position. An employee who seeks to employ foreign workers outside the European Economic Area (EEA) to take up positions available on the shortage occupation list may do so without embarking on a resident labour market test.
An individual who enters the United Kingdom as a Tier 2 General Migrant in order to undertake a specialized job contained on the shortage occupation list, he/she will be awarded all the required points for the application except points for maintenance and English Language.
In order for an employee to be sponsored to take up a job, the sponsoring employer must make sure the job meets the skill level required as well as the salary requirement in accordance to the code of practice applicable. The employer is not permitted to grant a certificate of sponsorship (CoS) if the job do not meet the requirements.
If your application for a Tier 2 visa application is refused, your next line of action may depend on the reasons for refusal. However your options include administrative review, make a fresh application or judicial review. Note that with an admin review you cannot give a new evidence. Please contact or immigration advisers if you are not sure about what direction you should take.
Application under this category made from certain foreign country can be submitted online. Online application from outside the United Kingdom should be done on this website: http://www.visa4uk.fco.gov.uk/ApplyNow.aspx

You are correct to observe that as a Tier 2 (General) holder, you are entitled to work separate to your sponsoring employers. There are two basis in which you can do so.

The provisions relating to supplementary employment are regulated by the following provisions-

1. That you are undertaking work as you are currently being sponsored as per your Certificate of Sponsorship.

2. That the work is for less than 20 hours a week.

3. The work is conducted outside of your sponsored working hours.

In the event that you meet these requirements, you will not need a new Tier 2 (General) visa to undertaken such work.

Because you will be undertaking work in a different SoC code to which you are currently being sponsored for, you unfortunately will need to apply for another Tier 2 (General) visa to run concurrently with your current visa.

Other ways to potentially work in both roles would be applying for a Tier 1 (Exceptional Talent) visa. An application for a Tier 1 (Exceptional Talent) visa has two stages-

Stage 1

You will first need to obtain an endorsement from the designated competent body. These bodies are as follows-

  • Arts Council England - for arts, culture, fashion, architecture, film and television applications;
  • The British Academy - for humanities and social science applications;
  • The Royal Society - for natural sciences and medical science research applications;
  • The Royal Academy of Engineering - for engineering applications; and
  • Tech Nation - for digital technology applications.

Stage 2
Once you have received an endorsement, you can either submit an application with the endorsement letter and await for the Home Office to invite you to submit further documents (stage 2) or you can elect to submit an application later with documents for both stage 1 and 2 in one go.

The documents the Home Office expect will vary on the industry you are in but generally speaking they will assess your application as to whether you are an-

1. Exceptional Talent - that you are a leader of your field; or

2. Exceptional Promise - that you have the potential to be a leader of your field.

Please feel free to contact one of our Senior Associates who will be happy to discuss your options in more detail and advise you further.

In order to apply for an extension of a Tier 2 (General) visa, you will need to show that your Employee is continuing to be employed in a role which the Home Office accepts sponsorship for. This is known as the 'SoC' code. Once the relevant code has been identified, we can assess whether or not the Employee's salary is sufficient to meet the requirements for an extension of leave. Once this has been established an Unrestricted Certificate of Sponsorship will need to be applied for (unless the company already has an Unrestricted Certificate of Sponsorship which has not yet been assigned) and assigned to the Employee in question.

There is no need to carry out a Resident Labour Market Test if the Employee is currently being employed in the same SoC code. If the role is to be varied, than a new Resident Labour Market Test will need to be undertaken (unless the role falls within a Shortage Occupation role) before the Employee can take that new role.

Once this has been established, we will need to ensure that the Employment has held £945 for 90 days and £630 for each dependant unless the company is willing to certify maintenance on the Employee's behalf. Certification of maintenance can be confirmed on the Certificate of Sponsorship which will need to be assigned to the Employee.

In relation to the requirements for Indefinite Leave to Remain, the Employee's salary will need to be £36,900 or £37,900 (depending on whether or not the Employee has reached 5 years as a Tier 2 (General) visa holder before or after 6 April 2022) or the one on their SoC code, whichever one is higher.

The company will also need to confirm that the Employee's continued employment is required for the foreseeable future. This will be confirmed by way of letter.

Finally, the Employee will need to have sat and passed the Life in the UK examination.

Please feel free to contact us if you would like to discuss any of the issues raised in this email in more detail.

Please find below a summary of the Tier 2 visa process.

Vacancy

The first step would be to identify the relevant Code for sponsorship. We attach a link to the relevant Codes-

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/immigration-rules/immigration-rules-appendix-j-codes-of-practice-for-skilled-work

Please feel free to have a look at Tables 1 and 2 to see if there is a Code that suits the vacancy.

The starting point for this vacancy would be that the company will need to advertise the vacancy on two platforms for at least 28 days. The general exemptions to this requirement are if-

1. The successful candidate is currently a Tier 4 student;

2. The vacancy is on the Shortage Occupation List.

Once we have established the Code and assuming any advertisement campaign has gone live, the company can begin preparing the documents relevant for the Sponsor Licence. 

Certificate of Sponsorship

Once the Resident Labour Market Test (if one is required) has been completed, your sponsoring company will then need to assign a Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) in your favour.

There are two different types of CoS and the main difference between the two types is when the company can make a request for the CoS-

1. Unrestricted CoS - this is generally applicable where the candidate is already in the UK and permitted to submit their Tier 2 application from within the UK. This CoS can be applied for at any time.

2. Restricted CoS - this must be applied by the 5th of a month in order to know within the same month as whether or not the CoS has been granted. There is a restriction of around 1000-2000 per month but given the proposed salary on offer.

Tier 2 application

Once you have received your CoS, The successful candidate will be required to satisfy the requirements:

  • have been assigned a valid Certificate of Sponsorship to do a skilled job in the UK which has passed the RLMT.
  • have been offered a job which as the appropriate skill level of National Qualifications Framework (NQF) Level 6.
  • will be paid the appropriate salary 
  • your evidence that you have the requisite funds to maintain yourself in the UK; your employer will be able to certify your maintenance to satisfy this point. 
  • you have met the English language requirement.

A Tier 2 application will take somewhere in the region of roughly 5 - 30 working days depending on whether or not the Priority Service is paid for.

In order to apply for an extension of a Tier 2 (General) visa, you will need to show that your Employee is continuing to be employed in a role which the Home Office accepts sponsorship for. This is known as the 'SoC' code. Once the relevant code has been identified, we can assess whether or not the Employee's salary is sufficient to meet the requirements for an extension of leave. Once this has been established an Unrestricted Certificate of Sponsorship will need to be applied for (unless the company already has an Unrestricted Certificate of Sponsorship which has not yet been assigned) and assigned to the Employee in question. 

There is no need to carry out a Resident Labour Market Test if the Employee is currently being employed in the same SoC code. If the role is to be varied, than a new Resident Labour Market Test will need to be undertaken (unless the role falls within a Shortage Occupation role) before the Employee can take that new role.

Once this has been established, we will need to ensure that the Employment has held £945 for 90 days and £630 for each dependant unless the company is willing to certify maintenance on the Employee's behalf. Certification of maintenance can be confirmed on the Certificate of Sponsorship which will need to be assigned to the Employee.

In relation to the requirements for Indefinite Leave to Remain, the Employee's salary will need to be £36,900 or £37,900 (depending on whether or not the Employee has reached 5 years as a Tier 2 (General) visa holder before or after 6 April 2022) or the one on their SoC code, whichever one is higher.

The company will also need to confirm that the Employee's continued employment is required for the foreseeable future. This will be confirmed by way of letter.

Finally, the Employee will need to have sat and passed the Life in the UK examination.

Your Dependants will be able to apply to accompany you to the UK or join you at a later stage and so long as you continue to meet the requirements, they should also continue to have the right to remain in the UK.

We right further to your enquiry.

It appears that a previous application was refused on the basis that the wrong appropriate salary was calculated. The SoC code 2421 Chartered and Certified Accountants' appropriate salary is £20,800 (new entrant) or £30,000 (experienced) is based on a 39 hour working week.

We would advise you that a new Certificate of Sponsorship is assigned to the Employee in question and a new Tier 2 application is submitted within 14 days of the refusal of the initial Tier 2 application - unless the Employee continues to have valid Leave. In the Tier 2 application, it is fundamental to explain that the salary was miscalculated and that the appropriate salary is now correct. We can assist you in calculating the appropriate salary as well as drafting representations on your behalf to explain the misunderstanding as well as to set out the reasons why the application should now be submitted.

Our opinion is that so long as the salary has been calculated properly, using either the postal priority or super priority service would be suitable as the issue raised in the refusal of the previous application is relatively straightforward and easily rectified.

Please do not hesitate to contact us if you feel you need further representations or assistance.

We write further to your enquiry.

The starting point for this vacancy would be to idenitfy the relevant code. We believe that the code 2419 Legal professionals not elsewhere classified would be the best code to sponsor any successful candidate on. However, we provide a link to the Codes below-

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/immigration-rules/immigration-rules-appendix-j-codes-of-practice-for-skilled-work

Please review Tables 1 and 2 only to see if there is a better code that suits the vacancy.

Once a code is confirmed, the strating point would be that the company will need to advertise the vacancy on two platforms for at least 28 days. The general exemptions to this requirement are if-

1. The successful candidate is currently a Tier 4 student;

2. The vacancy is on the Shortage Occupation List.

Certificate of Sponsorship

Once the Resident Labour Market Test (if one is required) has been completed, you will then need to assign a Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) in the canddiate's favour.

There are two different types of CoS and the main difference between the two types is when the company can make a request for the CoS-

1. Unrestricted CoS - this is generally applicable where the candidate is already in the UK and permitted to submit their Tier 2 application from within the UK. This CoS can be applied for at any time.

2. Restricted CoS - this must be applied by the 5th of a month in order to know within the same month as whether or not the CoS has been granted. There is a restriction of around 1000-2000 per month but given the proposed salary on offer.

Tier 2 application

Once you have assigned the CoS, the successful candidate will be required to satisfy the requirements:

  • have been assigned a valid Certificate of Sponsorship to do a skilled job in the UK which has passed the RLMT.
  • have been offered a job which as the appropriate skill level of National Qualifications Framework (NQF) Level 6.
  • will be paid the appropriate salary 
  • your evidence that you have the requisite funds to maintain yourself in the UK; your employer will be able to certify your maintenance to satisfy this point. 
  • you have met the English language requirement.

A Tier 2 application will take somewhere in the region of roughly 5 - 30 working days depending on whether or not the Priority Service is paid for.

We would be happy to arrange a consultation to discuss these requirements further and advise you accordingly.

We write further to your enquiry.

The starting point for this vacancy would be to idenitfy the relevant code. We provide a link to the Codes below-

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/immigration-rules/immigration-rules-appendix-j-codes-of-practice-for-skilled-work

Please review Tables 1 and 2 only to see if there is a better code that suits the vacancy. Alternatively, please feel free to send us the Job Description and we can help identify a Code on your behalf.

Once a code is confirmed, the strating point would be that the company will need to advertise the vacancy on two platforms for at least 28 days. The general exemptions to this requirement are if-

1. The successful candidate is currently a Tier 4 student;

2. The vacancy is on the Shortage Occupation List.

Certificate of Sponsorship

Once the Resident Labour Market Test (if one is required) has been completed, you will then need to assign a Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) in the canddiate's favour.

There are two different types of CoS and the main difference between the two types is when the company can make a request for the CoS-

1. Unrestricted CoS - this is generally applicable where the candidate is already in the UK and permitted to submit their Tier 2 application from within the UK. This CoS can be applied for at any time.

2. Restricted CoS - this must be applied by the 5th of a month in order to know within the same month as whether or not the CoS has been granted. There is a restriction of around 1000-2000 per month but given the proposed salary on offer.

Tier 2 application

Once you have assigned the CoS, the successful candidate will be required to satisfy the requirements:

  • have been assigned a valid Certificate of Sponsorship to do a skilled job in the UK which has passed the RLMT.
  • have been offered a job which as the appropriate skill level of National Qualifications Framework (NQF) Level 6.
  • will be paid the appropriate salary 
  • your evidence that you have the requisite funds to maintain yourself in the UK; your employer will be able to certify your maintenance to satisfy this point. 
  • you have met the English language requirement.

A Tier 2 application will take somewhere in the region of roughly 5 - 30 working days depending on whether or not the Priority Service is paid for.

We would be happy to arrange a consultation to discuss these requirements further and advise you accordingly.

The Resident Labour Market Test (RLMT) is essentially an advertisement campaign. The campaign will need to be live for at least 28 days and be posted on Find a Job (unless the salary is circa £80,000 or higher) as well as one other online portal.

The Home Office's requirements on the RLMT also dictates that the advert specifies the salary on offer, the opening and closing dates for the adverts. It is also best practice to identify the relevant SoC code before the advert goes 'live'. We provide a link to the Codes below-

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/immigration-rules/immigration-rules-appendix-j-codes-of-practice-for-skilled-work

Please review Tables 1 and 2 only to see if there is a better code that suits the vacancy. Alternatively, please feel free to send us the Job Description and we can help identify a Code on your behalf. The Codes will not only ensure that the vacancy is one that can be sposnored, it will also dictate the relevant minimum salary that must be paid. Once we have idenitfied the code, we can advise you on the minimum salary. However as a broad idea, the salary will be as follows-

New Entrant - where the candidate is under the age of 26 or is currently a Tier 4 (General) student 

Experienced - where the candidate is over the age of 26 or is being sponsored for more than 3 years and 4 months

Screenshots with specific information such as the full URL of the advert on the date it was posted and the day it was closed will also be required.

By the end of the 28 days, the company will then finish interviewing all relevant candidates and should keep all notes taken in order to explain who was selected and why they were the best candidate for the position. Although these notes are not strictly required for the Certificate of Sponsorship ('CoS') application, it is common for the Home Office to ask to see the selection process before making a decision on the CoS application. This is for the Home Office to ensure the there is a 'genuine vacancy' and that the position was not one which was tailored to a specific person in mind.

Please feel free to contact us for further advice or assistance in the Resident Labour Market Test or in the CoS or Tier 2 application.

Yes, leave whilst on section 3c of the Immigration Act 1971 does not as lawful residence in the UK.

Generally speaking in order to be successful for Indefinite Leave to Remain under the 10 years Long Residence application, you will firstly need to demonstrate 10 years 'lawful residence'. This includes time spent on section 3c. any breaks in visas for 14 days or less (or 28 days before November 2016) will be disregarded and therefore will not break continuous residence. Further you will need to establish 'continuous' residence. This means your absences must be under 540 days in the 10 years relied on (absent exceptional circumstances) and no one absence of 180 days or more (again absent exceptional circumstances).

There must not be reasons why your application should be refused such as criminal convictions (whether previous or pending), cautions or warnings or any immigration breaches whilst in the UK.

You will need to provide evidence to meet the English Language requirement. This requirement can be met in one of the following ways-

1. Passing the B1 Life Skills examination with Trinity College

2. Obtaining a degree or higher from the UK;

3. Being a national of a majority English peaking country

4. Obtaining the equivalent of a degree or higher from a majority English speaking country (as certified by UK NARIC)

5. Obtaining the equivalent of a degree or higher in a course that was taught in English (as certified by UK NARIC)

You will also need to provide evidence that you have passed the Life in the UK examination.

We would be happy to discuss your specific circumstances in more detail and advise you further. If you require assistance, please do not hesitate to contact me.

In order to qualify for Indefinite Leave to Remain as a Tier 2 (General) visa holder, you must demonstrate that you are currently receiving a salary of £35,800 or the appropriate salary on your SoC code - whichever is higher. Your sponsor must also provide a letter to confirm that your employment is required for the foreseeable future.

You will need to meet the English Language requirement. You should have passed this in your initial Tier 2 application, but generally speaking you will provide evidence of one of the following-

1. Passing the B1 Life Skills examination with Trinity College

2. Obtaining a degree or higher from the UK;

3. Being a national of a majority English peaking country

4. Obtaining the equivalent of a degree or higher from a majority English speaking country (as certified by UK NARIC)

5. Obtaining the equivalent of a degree or higher in a course that was taught in English (as certified by UK NARIC)

You will also need to provide evidence that you have passed the Life in the UK examination.

We will be able to assist you in advising and preparing your application. We will also complete the online application form and prepare written representations on your behalf. Please feel free to contact us to arrange a free consultation so that we can advise you further.

We write further to your enquiry.

In order to qualify for a PBS Dependant visa (that is being a dependant of a Tier 2 visa holder) you will first need to establish that you are either married or have lived together with your partner for at least 2 years. In order to marry in the UK (if this is something you are currently considering) you will need to contact your Registry Office to deposit your notice of intention to marry. Because both yourself and your partner are subject to immigration control, there will be a referral to the Home Office who will then decide whether or not they want to investigate your relationship to determine whether or not the proposed marriage is one of convenience. If no investigation is made by the Home Office than you will be free to marry 28 days after. This period will be extended to 70 days in the event that the Home Office do wish to conduct an investigation - of which will normally be a request for further documents and/or an interview.

Assuming you are married or have lived together for 2 years you then have the option to submit a PBS Dependant application. You will need to show that you have held £630 for 90 days unless your partner's sponsoring company has or is willing to certify maintenance on your behalf. If the sponsoring company has already certified maintenance, this would have been confirmed in your partner's Certificate of Sponsorship. However, if this has not been confirmed but the company has since changed its mind, the company can provide a letter to confirm that it is now willing to certify maintenance on your behalf.

Depending on your circumstances, it does appear this can be achieved by 17 September 2019. Please feel free to contact us so that we can take further instructions from you in order to advise you further as well as to confirm what needs to be done in order to meet this timeframe.

From the immigration history that you have outlined, there seems to be a clear option for you.

Now, you refer to your most recent immigration status as a "relative" of an EU member. If you were married to this EU national, and are currently taking steps to initiate a divorce, following the breakdown of a marriage, as the soon-to-be ex-partner of an EEA national, you may be eligible for Retained Rights of Residence. There are requirements that you must meet to qualify that our team can discuss with you.

From the immigration history that you have outlined, there seems to be a clear option for you.

Whilst you are in the UK on Tier 2 General visa, there are rules as to your working activities outside of your sponsored role. The Home Office guidance is relatively silent on this area - however, the little guidance they provide states as follows, applicants would be allowed to take supplementary employment that must meet the following criteria: 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. In addition to the supplementary employment, the applicants are also allowed to take unpaid voluntary employment.

What is not allowed?

Tier 2 (General) workers are not allowed to enter self-employment, set-up a business or join another business as a director or partner without obtaining further permission from the Home Office. They are also not allowed to hold more than 10% shares in the company they are working for. Please note that this restriction is not on those workers who are working for a Partnership / Sole Proprietor business.

From the information above, there is very little we can add to advise. If you want to understand more about this, please contact the Home Office directly.

Most, if not all, jobs to the level of RQF level 6 (roles which can be sponsored) will require a Bachelor's degree to confirm the applicant's English fluency.

Once you have obtained your degree, you will be able to speak with your employer about obtaining sponsorship.

Should you wish to discuss this further, we can arrange for your level 1 user to speak with their representative within our team.

There is a particular process that you will need to follow to be lawfully employed by a UK company as a foreign skilled migrant.

Currently, you will need to apply online for the job and proceed through the application stages amongst other applicants including UK/EU nationals who must be considered for the job first if they have the relevant skillset.

Our team can follow up with you to navigate you through the process.

Sure.

Now, with respect to the process, we are able to liaise with yourself and your potential employer so that we are completely compliant.

We also offer regulatory and compliance services to ensure that the immigration rules are continually adhered to throughout the employment of the foreign skilled migrant.

Our team of business immigration specialists are on hand to discuss your current situation and the potential next steps that would need to be taken in order to proceed with the application itself.

Sure. We are able to assist you with the process of completing a Tier 2 General visa application.

We are able to act with your employer so that the CoS can be assigned and we are able to assess, prepare and submit the Tier 2 General application.

The start date for the CoS will indicate the day that you should essentially start your job. If those two dates do not match, then there needs to be a good reason as to why.

Our team are business immigration specialists and we are able to assist you with your enquiry.

Not only do we assist in obtaining the sponsor licence and hiring the foreign skilled migrant, we also have a regulatory and compliance service which will allow you to consult our team at your convenience.

Thank you for your enquiry.

When Croatia joined the EU in 2013, they were subject to restrictions. During this time, Croatian nationals needed to apply for permission to obtain a card to confirm their right to reside and work in the UK. We are pleased to advise that these restrictions ended on 30 June 2018. You therefore do not need to obtain permission to work.

With Brexit on the horizon, we would recommend that once you are residing in the UK, you apply for Pre-Settled Status, which is under the new rules created by the government for EU nationals once the UK leaves the EU.

You can read more about this here - https://www.gov.uk/settled-status-eu-citizens-families/what-settled-and-presettled-status-means.

Thank you for your enquiry.

When Croatia joined the EU in 2013, they were subject to restrictions. During this time, Croatian nationals needed to apply for permission to obtain a card to confirm their right to reside and work in the UK. We are pleased to advise that these restrictions ended on 30 June 2018. You therefore do not need to obtain permission to work.

With Brexit on the horizon, we would recommend that once you are residing in the UK, you apply for Pre-Settled Status, which is under the new rules created by the government for EU nationals once the UK leaves the EU.

You can read more about this here - https://www.gov.uk/settled-status-eu-citizens-families/what-settled-and-presettled-status-means.

Thank you for your enquiry.

You may be able to apply to remain in the UK as the partner of a British citizen under Appendix FM of the Immigration Rules. In order to show that you are a partner, you will need to provide evidence that you have been living together in a relationship akin to marriage for two years or more. Evidence should ideally be from official third party sources. Examples of this will include tenancy agreements, utility bills, bank statements and payslips. The burden of proving that you satisfy this is upon you. If you are able to provide this evidence, the Home Office will accept you are an unmarried partner.

In order to satisfy the specific Rules, you will need to show that you satisfy the other requirements for this specific immigration status.

These in a nutshell are as follows:

  • Suitability requirement (that you do not have criminal convictions, cautions, civil judgements or other conduct or associations that make it undesirable for you to remain in the UK);
  • Genuine and subsisting relationship;
  • Financial requirement;
  • Adequate accommodation.

We recommend that you seek our legal advice in order to confirm whether you will satisfy the Rules.

Thank you for your enquiry.

If you partner wishes to work in the UK, she will need to find a company that will be willing to sponsor her as a Tier 2 migrant. The employing company will need to have a Tier 2 Sponsor Licence which is issued to companies that apply for them. In order to be sponsored, the employment she wishes to undertake must be one that can be sponsored. Generally, it needs to be a skilled (usually graduate) role that is on a list of approved roles published by the Home Office.

There are potentially other options available besides the Tier 2 visa option. We will be happy to discuss this further.

Thank you for your enquiry.

As an EEA national, as it stands you are still free to enter and exit the UK freely under EU free movement rights. In addition, as you were resident in the UK between 2001 and 2014, if you were exercising treaty rights (e.g. working, self-employed, self-sufficient or a student) for a continuous period of five years or more, you will have automatically become a permanent resident (meaning you are settled) in the UK under the EEA Regulations. If you have not been away from the UK for more than two years without returning, you may therefore still be considered to be settled here in the UK. If this is the case, you can apply for Settled Status under the Post-Brexit rules brought in by the government.

You can read more about Settled Status here - https://www.gov.uk/settled-status-eu-citizens-families/what-settled-and-presettled-status-means.

We recommend that you seek our legal advice in order to confirm whether the above is relevant to your circumstances.

Thank you for your enquiry.

An EEA residence card and permanent EEA residence card are both issued under the Immigration (European Economic Area) Regulations 2006. The difference between the two is that an EEA residence card is generally issued for a limited period (usually five years) whilst a permanent residence card is issued once someone has completed the limited period (usually after they have completed the limited period of five years). Generally, in order to obtain a permanent EEA residence card, you will need to show that the EEA national has exercised their treaty rights (for example working, self-employed, self-sufficient or a student) for a continuous period of five years. If the EEA national has not been in the UK for continuously exercising treaty rights for at least five years or there has been a break of more than six months without a good reason, they will not be eligible for a permanent EEA residence card.

With Brexit on the horizon, we recommend that you apply for Settled Status under the government's Post-Brexit rules. To obtain Settled status, the EEA national will need to show that they have been in the UK for at least five years or more. If this is the case, then they will be granted Settled Status, meaning that they are no longer subject to time restrictions on their visa.

Our advice is based on the law as it currently stands. We recommend seeking up to date and tailored legal advice if you intend to make any applications.

Thank you for your enquiry.

An EEA residence card and permanent EEA residence card are both issued under the Immigration (European Economic Area) Regulations 2006. The difference between the two is that an EEA residence card is generally issued for a limited period (usually five years) whilst a permanent residence card is issued once someone has completed the limited period (usually after they have completed the limited period of five years). Generally, in order to obtain a permanent EEA residence card, you will need to show that the EEA national has exercised their treaty rights (for example working, self-employed, self-sufficient or a student) for a continuous period of five years. If the EEA national has not been in the UK for continuously exercising treaty rights for at least five years or there has been a break of more than six months without a good reason, they will not be eligible for a permanent EEA residence card.

With Brexit on the horizon, we recommend that you apply for Settled Status under the government's Post-Brexit rules. To obtain Settled status, the EEA national will need to show that they have been in the UK for at least five years or more. If this is the case, then they will be granted Settled Status, meaning that they are no longer subject to time restrictions on their visa.

Our advice is based on the law as it currently stands. We recommend seeking up to date and tailored legal advice if you intend to make any applications.

Thank you for your enquiry.

As you obtained Indefinite Leave to Remain ('ILR') under Tier 2 of Immigration Rules and your wife was granted Leave To Remain ('LTR') on the basis of being a Tier 2 Dependent, she will be able to continue on her five year route to ILR as a Tier 2 Dependent. The time she has completed so far will continue towards the five years needed for ILR. This will continue to be the case even if you were to become a British citizen.

Our advice is based on the law as it currently stands. We recommend seeking up to date and tailored legal advice if you intend to make any applications.

With regard to supplementary employment, the Home Office's guidance states that prior permission is not required as long as it is the following:

  • in either a job which is included on the Shortage Occupation List in Appendix K of the Immigration Rules, or a job in the same profession, and at the same professional level, as the work for which your Certificate of Sponsorship was assigned; and
  • no more than 20 hours per week; and
  • outside of the normal working hours for which your Certificate of Sponsorship was assigned.

In addition, you must continue to work for your sponsor in the job recorded on your Certificate of Sponsorship. If any prospective additional work does not satisfy all of the above, you will need to obtain permission from the Home Office to undertake the work.

Our advice is based on the law as it currently stands. We recommend seeking up to date and tailored legal advice if you intend to make any applications.

Thank you for your enquiry.

With regard to supplementary employment, the Home Office's guidance states that prior permission is not required as long as it is the following:

  • in either a job which is included on the Shortage Occupation List in Appendix K of the Immigration Rules, or a job in the same profession, and at the same professional level, as the work for which your Certificate of Sponsorship was assigned; and
  • no more than 20 hours per week; and
  • outside of the normal working hours for which your Certificate of Sponsorship was assigned.

In addition, you must continue to work for your sponsor in the job recorded on your Certificate of Sponsorship. If any prospective additional work does not satisfy all of the above, you will need to obtain permission from the Home Office to undertake the work.

Our advice is based on the law as it currently stands. We recommend seeking up to date and tailored legal advice if you intend to make any applications.

Tier 4 (General) 

Depending on your level of study, you may be able to extend your visa to remain in the UK to further your studies in the UK.  The following is some of the scenarios that may apply depending on your last grant of visa: 

  1. You plan to study a course low degree level -  your course must not lead to you being granted more than 2 years in the UK as a Tier 4 (General) migrant since the age of 18;
  2. You plan to study a course at degree level or above - your course must not lead to you being granted more than 5 years in the UK as a Tier 4 (General) migrant since the age of 18;

The exception to this rule may apply if you have completed a degree course which has lasted 4 academic years and will progress to studying a higher qualification and not lead to the applicant being granted 6 years in the UK since the age of 18, the course leads to a PhD level course or will be pursuing a course in Law, Architecture, Medicine or Dentistry. 

Tier 2 (General)

As a Tier 2 (General) migrant you will also be required to satisfy the requirements that you:

  • have been assigned a valid Certificate of Sponsorship to do a skilled job in the UK which has passed the RLMT;
  • have been offered a job which as the appropriate skill level of Regulated Qualifications Framework (RQF) Level 6; and
  • will be paid the appropriate salary for the job you will be undertaking which is not less than £20,800 per annum;
  • your evidence that you have the requisite funds to maintain yourself in the UK; your employer will be able to certify your maintenance to satisfy this point.
  • you have met the English language requirement;

In the foreseeable future for those who start a new course of study in the 2020/21 intake, may be able to apply for a 'post-study' work visa which will enable you to work and in future obtain a Tier 2 (General) work visa. It is at present which levels of study this will apply to or who will be eligible. More details will be released by the Home Office which is likely to be post conclusion of 'Brexit'.

If you would like to speak with an immigration specialist for a free consultation, you can reach us on 0203 540 7770.

We would require more detail to answer your query and it would be advisable to contact one of our specialist immigration advisors for a free consultation. You can reach us on 0203 540 7770.

Thank you for your enquiry regarding an entry clearance application as a Tier 2 (General) applicant. As an overview, you must first find and be offered a job role by a UK company. If the UK Sponsor does not already have a sponsor licence, we can also assist them to get this. If they do have a sponsor licence, the company must be able to advertise the role first to establish that there is no suitable settled person that is available to fill the job. The general exemptions to this requirement are if-

1. The successful candidate is currently a Tier 4 student;

2. The vacancy is on the Shortage Occupation List.

Tier 2 (General)

As you employee will be applying to remain in the UK as a Tier 2 (General) migrant your Sponsor will have to conduct a Resident Labour Market Test (RLMT) to give the settled/ British workforce a chance to apply for the job it wishes to recruit for. The RLMT will involve advertising the job for a period of 28 days on two sources. Only if a suitable settled worker cannot be found, then the job may then be offered to a non-settled person. We can assist the sponsor that they conuct the RLMT in complaince with the Home Office requirements. 

Certificate of Sponsorship

Once the Resident Labour Market Test (if one is required) has been completed, your sponsoring company will then need to assign a Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) in your favour.

There are two different types of CoS and the main difference between the two types is when the company can make a request for the CoS-

1. Unrestricted CoS - this is generally applicable where the candidate is already in the UK and permitted to submit their Tier 2 application from within the UK. This CoS can be applied for at any time.

2. Restricted CoS - this must be applied for by the 5th day of each month in order to know within the same month as whether or not the CoS has been granted. There is a restriction of around £1000-£2000 per month  

As a Tier 2 (General) migrant you will also be required to satisfy the requirements that you:

  • have been assigned a valid Certificate of Sponsorship to do a skilled job in the UK which has passed the RLMT;
  • have been offered a job which as the appropriate skill level of Regulated Qualifications Framework (RQF) Level 6; and
  • will be paid the appropriate salary for the job you will be undertaking which is not less than £20,800 per annum;
  • your evidence that you have the requisite funds to maintain yourself in the UK; your employer will be able to certify your maintenance to satisfy this point.
  • you have met the English language requirement;

A Tier 2 application will take somewhere in the region of roughly 1-30 working days to be processed depending on whether or not the Priority Service is paid for.

If you would like to speak with an immigration specialist for a free consultation, you can reach us on 0203 540 7770.

Unfortunately you will not be able to switch to apply for ILR on the same basis and particularly so that you are now on a Tier 2 (General) visa which is independent of the family. 

Tier 2 (General) ILR

In order to apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain in the UK you will have to satisfy the following requirements:

  1. The applicant must have been employed with a licenced sponsor for the duration of their Tier 2 visa and earn at least £35,800, if applying on or after 6 April 2019. Please note that this threshold increases each year. 
  2. The applicant will need to evidence by way of a letter from the employer that they have been working for a specified period and are still needed for the job.
  3. The applicant needs to have the required level of English language, which must be at least level B1 on the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR) or have an academic qualification that was taught in a majority English speaking country and is recognised by UK NARIC as being equivalent to a UK bachelor's, master's or PhD level. 

Long Residence - 10 Year ILR

This option will largely depend on when your Tier 2 (General) visa expires but if you are able to evidence that you have lawfully resided in the UK for a continuous period of 10 years, you may apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain. If your Tier 2 (General) expires before then, you will want to extend your visa to take you beyond this date so that you are eligible to apply.

If you would like to speak with an immigration specialist for a free consultation, you can reach us on 0203 540 7770.

Thank you for your enquiry. You are correct in that if you are not able to satisfy the Job Creation criteria, you will not be able to extend your Tier 1(Entrepreneur) Visa. One solution would be to apply for a Tier 2 (General) work visa of which I have provid8ed an overview as below. As you currently have leave in the UK as a Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) route, you will be able to submit your application from within the UK, provided that it is submitted before the expiration of your current visa. I've set out in summary the process to obtaining your Tier 2 (General) application below. 

Tier 2 Sponsor Licence

The UK business will have to apply for and be granted a Tier 2 Sponsor Licence before it will be able to employ a foreign migrant. As part of this application, the Sponsor will have to provide evidence that it is genuine organisation operating lawfully in the UK. It  must also demonstrate that it is 'suitable' to carry out its duties as a Tier 2 Sponsor.

We will guide the Sponsor through this process to ensure that it is aware of its Sponsorship duties. The application is made online and will involve sending to the Home Office documents that it is operating lawfully in the UK. If the Sponsorship Licence is granted, then it will be able to assign a Certificate of Sponsorship to you in order to make your application to enter the UK as a Tier 2 (General) migrant.

Tier 2 (General)

As you will be applying to remain in the UK as a Tier 2 (General) migrant your Sponsor will have to conduct a Resident Labour Market Test (RLMT) to give the settled/ British workforce a chance to apply for the job it wishes to recruit for. The RLMT will involve advertising the job for a period of 28 days on two sources. Only if a suitable settled worker cannot be found, then the job may then be offered to a non-settled person. We can assist the sponsor that they conuct the RLMT in complaince with the Home Office requirements. 

Certificate of Sponsorship

Once the Resident Labour Market Test (if one is required) has been completed, your sponsoring company will then need to assign a Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) in your favour.

There are two different types of CoS and the main difference between the two types is when the company can make a request for the CoS-

1. Unrestricted CoS - this is generally applicable where the candidate is already in the UK and permitted to submit their Tier 2 application from within the UK. This CoS can be applied for at any time.

2. Restricted CoS - this must be applied for by the 5th day of each month in order to know within the same month as whether or not the CoS has been granted. There is a restriction of around £1000-£2000 per month  

As a Tier 2 (General) migrant you will also be required to satisfy the requirements that you:

  • have been assigned a valid Certificate of Sponsorship to do a skilled job in the UK which has passed the RLMT;
  • have been offered a job which as the appropriate skill level of Regulated Qualifications Framework (RQF) Level 6; and
  • will be paid the appropriate salary for the job you will be undertaking which is not less than £20,800 per annum;
  • your evidence that you have the requisite funds to maintain yourself in the UK; your employer will be able to certify your maintenance to satisfy this point.
  • you have met the English language requirement;

A Tier 2 application will take somewhere in the region of roughly 1-30 working days to be processed depending on whether or not the Priority Service is paid for.

If you would like to speak with an immigration specialist for a free consultation, you can reach us on 0203 540 7770.

As a sponsor licence holder, there are strict duties to report such issues within 10 working day of the event happening. Failure to notify the Home Office of such a change could result in the Home Office taking action against you. In the circumstances, if there is no current level 1 user or Authorising Officer it is likely that action could be taken against the company. Until this is resolved, it may be best to place on hold any application for a CoS. You should also note that a Key Contact does not have automatic access to the SMS and they should under no circumstances use another users credentials to log-in. 

To report the change of the Authorising Officer it must be completed using the SMS system however if there is no one available with clearance to use the SMS, the sponsor will have to contact the Home Office directly.

Failure to comply with the Home Office rules may result in one or more of the following:

  1. Downgrading of the sponsor licence from rating 'A' to 'B' - this could involve an action plan and timeframe to restore the rating to 'A' or risk suspension or revocation; 
  2. Suspension or revocation of the sponsor licence - this may happen if the sponsor is deemed to be a serious threat to immigration control; 
  3. Civil Penalty - in cases where breaches occur the Sponsor may face a civil penalty in particular, cases where the sponsor has breached its duties such as employing migrants illegally.

For a Tier 2 (General) skilled worker to change employers an compliant RLMT must be conducted unless it would fall within a Shortage Occupation List which set out job roles which are in shortage in the UK. 

Certificate of Sponsorship

Once the Resident Labour Market Test (if one is required) has been completed, your sponsoring company will then need to assign a Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) in your favour.

There are two different types of CoS and the main difference between the two types is when the company can make a request for the CoS-

1. Unrestricted CoS - this is generally applicable where the candidate is already in the UK and permitted to submit their Tier 2 application from within the UK. This CoS can be applied for at any time.

2. Restricted CoS - this must be applied for by the 5th day of each month in order to know within the same month as whether or not the CoS has been granted. There is a restriction of around £1000-£2000 per month  

As a Tier 2 (General) migrant you will also be required to satisfy the requirements that you:

  • have been assigned a valid Certificate of Sponsorship to do a skilled job in the UK which has passed the RLMT;
  • have been offered a job which as the appropriate skill level of Regulated Qualifications Framework (RQF) Level 6; and
  • will be paid the appropriate salary for the job you will be undertaking which is not less than £20,800 per annum;
  • your evidence that you have the requisite funds to maintain yourself in the UK; your employer will be able to certify your maintenance to satisfy this point.
  • you have met the English language requirement;

A Tier 2 application will take somewhere in the region of roughly 1-30 working days to be processed depending on whether or not the Priority Service is paid for.

If you would like to speak with an immigration specialist for a free consultation, you can reach us on 0203 540 7770.

It would be open to you to reapply for this visa but the difficulty with the application is that the Home Office may question if the vacancy is genuine or not since the work hours have changed. Additionally, if the work hours are changed, a Resident Labour Market Test must be completed again before the job can be offered to you. If the hours are to remain at 40 hours, then the application may proceed if the application is submitted within the 24 hour period.

Our advice would be to discuss your case with one of our specialist advisors. You can reach us on 0203 540 7770.

If a Resident Labour Market Test has not been completed, the Sponsor company must take steps to satisfy this and that no suitable person has been identified. Only then can a job be offered to an overseas person. Only after this process has been completed can the Sponsor take steps to issue a CoS to you.

We would be happy to assist you with your enquiry. All of our lawyers are experienced across all areas of immigration and specifically Tier 2. As you will be switching from a Tier 4 (General) visa to Tier 2 (General), your will be able to offer you a job right away without the requirement to conduct a Resident Labour Market Test. 

Certificate of Sponsorship

Once the Resident Labour Market Test (if one is required) has been completed, your sponsoring company will then need to assign a Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) in your favour.

There are two different types of CoS and the main difference between the two types is when the company can make a request for the CoS-

1. Unrestricted CoS - this is generally applicable where the candidate is already in the UK and permitted to submit their Tier 2 application from within the UK. This CoS can be applied for at any time.

2. Restricted CoS - this must be applied for by the 5th day of each month in order to know within the same month as whether or not the CoS has been granted. There is a restriction of around £1000-£2000 per month  

As a Tier 2 (General) migrant you will also be required to satisfy the requirements that you:

  • have been assigned a valid Certificate of Sponsorship to do a skilled job in the UK which has passed the RLMT;
  • have been offered a job which as the appropriate skill level of Regulated Qualifications Framework (RQF) Level 6; and
  • will be paid the appropriate salary for the job you will be undertaking which is not less than £20,800 per annum;
  • your evidence that you have the requisite funds to maintain yourself in the UK; your employer will be able to certify your maintenance to satisfy this point.
  • you have met the English language requirement;

A Tier 2 application will take somewhere in the region of roughly 1-30 working days to be processed depending on whether or not the Priority Service is paid for.

If you would like to speak with an immigration specialist for a free consultation, you can reach us on 0203 540 7770.

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