Permission is required for non-UK citizens to work in the UK. This typically entails requesting a UK work permit visa.
There are a variety of work visa options available, with a main emphasis on skilled workers, entrepreneurs, investors, and particular programs created to attract particular worker profiles.
It should be noted that no general work visa or permit is available for part-time or low-skilled jobs.
The first step is to choose the best category, check your eligibility, and learn about the application process, fees, and lead times.
We summarize the main UK Work Permit Visa 2023 in this guide, outlining who each visa is intended for, how long it will last, what it will allow, the primary eligibility requirements, the application fee, and whether a specific route will give the visa holder a job.
You can enter the UK on a seasonal work visa for a set period, which can range from six months to a year. Your mandatory return to your home country follows that. You can work in industries like farming, raising poultry, horticulture, picking fruit and vegetables, etc. with a seasonal work visa.
A decision on your visa is typically made within three weeks of your online application, identity verification, and submission of your supporting documents if you live outside of the UK. If you’re in the UK, it takes around 8 weeks.
A Permission to Travel program will be implemented in 2023 to further secure the UK border. All travelers to the UK must obtain permission in advance of their trip.
You can apply for a visa up to three months before you plan to start working in the UK. This date is on your sponsorship certificate. You must present identification documentation and supporting documentation as part of your application. You might need to allow more time if you need to schedule an appointment to complete this.
An overseas national may apply for leave to enter or remain in the UK for the purpose of employment under several immigration routes, both short- and long-term, under the UK’s points-based system.
Except for Irish nationals, all EEA and non-EEA nationals who are not settled workers or who do not otherwise have permission to undertake employment in the UK will require a visa after the end of free movement between the UK and the EU.
The sponsored UK work visa known as the “Skilled Worker” enables foreign nationals to take on a specific position in a skilled profession for an employer who has obtained Home Office approval. Under the previous regulations, the Tier 2 (General) visa has been replaced by the Skilled Worker visa.
The cost of an application under the skilled worker route varies from £610 to £1408 and is determined by the individual circumstances of the applicant. Most EEA citizens will have this fee reduced by £55 instead. If the position is on the list of shortage occupations, the fee will be lower. Additionally, applicants are required to pay the Immigration Health Surcharge.
Typically, an immigration skills charge must be paid by the sponsoring organization when hiring a skilled immigrant worker. The amount due is determined by the organization’s size or status, as well as the duration of employment as specified in the sponsorship certificate.
The price is £364 for the first 12 months and £182 for each additional six months for modest or charitable sponsors. The price is £1000 for medium or large sponsors, plus an additional £500 every subsequent six months.
The applicant must have a legitimate job offer from a UK-licensed sponsor that satisfies the minimum wage and skill requirements to be eligible for a skilled worker visa.
The new rules have lowered the salary and skill threshold, making it simpler for UK businesses to hire skilled foreign workers, though a certificate of sponsorship from an employer authorized to use this route is still required.
The applicant also needs to meet certain English language proficiency requirements and have enough money to support themselves once they arrive in the UK.
An approved candidate will be given a skilled worker visa good for up to five years. This visa may be extended indefinitely as long as the applicant remains in compliance with the pertinent criteria for this route. A skilled worker who has been granted permission through this route for five years may also apply to settle permanently in the UK.
In addition to the various short-term and long-term sponsored work routes, there are several short-term sponsored UK work visas available.
An international citizen may be sponsored to enter the UK through one of six temporary worker visa categories: the creative worker visa, the charity worker visa, the religious worker visa, the government-authorized exchange worker visa, the international agreement worker visa, and the seasonal worker visa. The applicant will always need a current sponsorship certificate from a UK-registered sponsor.
Along with several other route-specific requirements, they must also fulfill a financial maintenance requirement. If granted, the visa holder’s rights and obligations will depend on the specific route taken, with maximum stays ranging from six months to two years.
The Youth Mobility Scheme is a different short-term route that is not sponsored. This program for cultural exchange offers young people from participating nations between the ages of 18 and 30 the opportunity to live in the UK for up to two years.
However, they will need to meet a much higher financial requirement to demonstrate that they can support themselves while in the UK. This route does not necessitate the applicant having a job offer.
How do you obtain a work visa for the United Kingdom?
You must apply online, pay the application fee and any applicable healthcare surcharge, and submit your supporting documentation to be granted a UK work visa. You might also be required to make an appointment to provide your biometric data.
Is it difficult to obtain a UK work visa?
Certain routes have more stringent requirements than others, making some UK work visa applications more challenging than others. In many instances, the applicant will need to have an offer of employment from a licensed sponsor that meets the minimum skill and salary requirements.
How much money is required for a work visa in the United Kingdom?
The amount of money needed for a UK work visa varies depending on the type of visa and the circumstances of the applicant. The Immigration Health Surcharge and a financial maintenance requirement may also be required of applicants.
Is a job offer required to apply for a work visa in the UK?
The High Potential Individual visa, the Graduate route, and the Global Talent visas are among the UK work visas that do not need a job offer from a UK-licensed sponsor, though various other route-specific requirements still need to be satisfied.