Skilled Worker Visa

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Skilled Worker Visa

With effect from 01 Jan 2021, the Skilled Worker Visa opens the doors for foreign skilled workers to avail Job opportunity in the UK. This new visa regime has abolished Tier-2 route in its entirety by lowering the requisite skills threshold; scrapping Resident labour Market Test [RLMT] and annual cap on sponsored workers and even lowering their minimum salary.

The applicants need to secure a total of 70 points [50 Non-tradeable points and 20 tradeable points] to get their visa approved.

How to apply:

The applicants can submit their Skilled Worker Visa application once they have received a job offer from a UK-based employer [Skilled Worker sponsor] which holds a valid Sponsor License.

Skilled Worker sponsor doesn’t need to pass Resident Labour Market Test [RLMT]. Under the scrapped Tier-2 route, RLMT was a mandatory requirement meaning that the job must have been advertised in two places for at least 28 days before it can be offered to applicants from outside the EEA. After CoS has been granted, applicants will be able to start their Skilled Worker Visa application.

The applicant must apply within 3 months from the date CoS is assigned. However, if their application is refused and they wish to make another request, they will need a new CoS.

UKVI requirements for Skilled Worker applications:

Sponsorship for Skilled Worker Visa:

One of the main requirements of this visa is that for an employer to be a licensed sponsor of Skilled Workers. Applicants will need to show this in their visa application and provide proof through their Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS).

The CoS is not a physical document but a reference number that must be included in applicants’ applications.

Should their employer has Sponsor License revoked while they are an employee there, they will need to find a new sponsor and reapply for a visa.

How long can I stay in the UK on a Skilled Worker Visa?

Applicants can come to the UK with a Skilled Worker Visa (General) for a maximum of 5 years and 14 days, or the time given on their certificate of sponsorship plus 1 month, whichever is shorter.

They can enter the UK using their Skilled Worker Visa up to 14 days before the start date on their certificate of sponsorship.

Skilled Worker Category

Skilled Worker ICT (Long Term Staff)

Skilled Worker ICT (Graduate Trainee)

Sportsperson

Minister of Religion

 

Skilled Worker Category

Up to 5 years

12 months

Up to 3 years

Up to 3 years and 1 month

Skilled Worker Visa Extension:

The Skilled Worker Visa is usually granted for an initial period of 3 years. The applicants may be granted further leave to remain in the UK provided they apply for an extension before the expiry of their visa and subject to fulfilling all requirements of the relevant Immigration Rules.

How to Apply:

If you intend to extend your leave to remain as a Skilled Worker visa holder, you must submit your Skilled Worker Visa renewal application from within the UK, and before your current visa expires.

Once your employer has agreed to extend your employment contract, they will need to apply for an unrestricted Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) to the Home Office.

In that case, your employer will not be required to undertake a new Resident Labor Market Test before assigning you a new CoS.

Visa Renewal Requirements:

Your eligibility for extension will depend on whether or not you continue to meet the Skilled Worker eligibility criteria under the same visa category, meaning that your role and salary must still qualify for a work permit.

As a part of your application, you will need the following:

  • A new Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS)
  • A relevant salary for your role –must be more than in your original application
  • Evidence of maintenance funds
  • Proof of English Language ability
  • Biometric evidence

Extension processing time:

The standard processing time for Skilled Worker visa extension applications is between 8 weeks. However, if you use the Home Office priority service, you should get a decision within 5 workings days* .

It must however be noted that the Home Office may need more time to review your case if you fail to submit adequate evidence of your situation. Besides, you might also be required to attend an interview to confirm your eligibility.

The applicants can submit their Skilled Worker visa renewal application up to 60 days before the expiry of their current immigration status. Nevertheless, if you are on a strict deadline, you can apply using the Home Office’s Super Priority Service, which will allow you to get your decision within 24 hours.

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