Skilled Worker Visa
A Skilled Worker visa allows you to come to or stay in the UK to do an eligible job with an approved employer. This visa has replaced the Tier 2 (General) work visa.
In order to apply you will have up to 3 months before the day you are due to start work in the UK. This date is listed on your certificate of sponsorship. As part of your application, you’ll need to prove your identity and provide your documents. You may need to allow extra time if you need an appointment to do this. You’ll find out if you need one when you start your application.
Once you have applied online, proved your identity and provided your documents, you’ll usually get a decision on your visa within 3 weeks, if you’re outside the UK. And 8 weeks, if you’re inside the UK. It’s currently taking 11 weeks on average to get a decision if you apply for a Skilled Worker visa from inside the UK. You may be able to pay to get a faster decision.
In order to be Eligible to qualify for a Skilled Worker visa, you must have a confirmed job offer before you apply for your visa. Be aware that the specific eligibility will depend on your job. Your employment must be for a UK employer that’s been approved by the Home Office. Have a ‘certificate of sponsorship’ from your employer with information about the role you’ve been offered in the UK. Do a job that’s on the list of eligible occupations Be paid a minimum salary – how much depends on the type of work you do.
Additionally, you must be able to prove your knowledge in English, you must be able to prove that you can speak, read, write and understand English. You will usually need to prove your knowledge of English when you apply.
In the instance at which your application is accepted, your visa can last for up to 5 years before you need to extend it. You’ll need to apply to extend or update your visa when it expires or if you change jobs or employer. You can apply to extend your visa as many times as you like as long as you still meet the eligibility requirements.
After 5 years, you may be able to apply to settle permanently in the UK (also known as ‘indefinite leave to remain’). This gives you the right to live, work and study here for as long as you like, and apply for benefits if you’re eligible.