What is the Tier 2 Work Visa and who can apply?

Skilled migrant workers from outside the European Economic Area (EEA) may apply for a Tier 2 Work Visa in order to come to the UK and work for a UK employer. Applicants must have a job offer from a Tier 2 licensed employer from the UK. It is possible to switch into the Tier 2 Visa category from another Points-Based System category within the UK and there is also the possibility of settlement after 5 years. 

What is the Tier 2 Work Visa?

The Tier 2 visa category of the Points-Based System allows skilled migrants from outside the EEA to come to the UK and work for a UK employer. Applicants must have a skilled job offer and a Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) from a Tier 2 employer, who is registered as a licensed Sponsor in the UK before they submit the Tier 2 Work Visa application. There are 4 sub-categories to the Tier 2 category: Tier 2 (General) Work Visa, Tier 2 Intra-company Transfer (ICT) Visa, Tier 2 (Minister of Religion) Visa and Tier 2 (Sportsperson) Visa. Under the Tier 2 visa route, Applicants may able to bring their dependants with them to the UK, or if they are already in the UK with existing leave, they may be able to apply to switch to a visa as a Tier 2 dependent.

The Home Office guidance on Tier 2 Visas offers more detail on how to satisfy the requirements of each Tier 2 Visa category. However, the UK’s Immigration Rules can be complex, therefore it is always best to seek advice from fully qualified immigration experts, such as our team which includes Solicitors and Barristers, before making any Points-Based System application to the Home Office. Contact us today to book an initial consultation with us.

What are the requirements for the Tier 2 Work Visa?

Tier 2 Work Visa Applicants must acquire 70 points. Applicants will acquire points for the following:

50 points for Attributes – To acquire 50 points for Attributes Applicants must be able to show the job offer passes a Resident Labour Market Test (RLMT), show a CoS number and the appropriate salary must be awarded. It is possible to be exempt from the RLMT

10 points for Maintenance – To acquire 10 points for Maintenance Applicants must be able to show that they can be accommodated and maintained in the UK without recourse to public funds

10 points for the English Language requirement – To acquire 10 points for the English Language requirement Applicants must meet a minimum level of CEFR level B1 in reading, writing, speaking and listening or have an academic qualification that was taught in English. Applicants from majority English speaking countries can satisfy the English Language requirement by proving nationality

Can I switch to the Tier 2 Work Visa?

Applicants can switch to the Tier 2 Work Visa from within the UK if they are already on a Points Based System visa (i.e. any Tier 1, Tier 4, Tier 5 and Representative of an Overseas Business). A popular switching visa category is switching from a Tier 4 Student visa to Tier 2 Work visa. The main advantages of switching from a Tier 4 Student Visa to a Tier 2 Work Visa are that:

  1. Employers are not required to conduct an Resident Labour Market Test (RLMT);
  2. Employers are not required to pay the Immigration Skills Charge;
  3. Applicants can make their application from within the UK and are not required to apply for Entry Clearance;
  4. Applicants can use their degree to meet the English Language requirement; and
  5. Applicants may be able to benefit from settlement status in the UK.

Can I settle on the Tier 2 Work Visa in the UK?

Tier 2 migrants who have been in the UK on the Tier 2 Work Visa for 5 years may be eligible for settlement (also referred to as Indefinite Leave to Remain) subject to meeting the relevant requirements. Some of the main requirements include:

  • Not falling under the General Grounds of Refusal;
  • Being able to meet the Minimum earnings threshold;
  • Satisfy the Knowledge of Language and Life (KoLL) in the UK requirement. This can be passed by passing an English Language test and a Life in the UK test;
  • Have had no more than 180 day’s absences from the UK during any consecutive 12 month period. Applicants will be required to provide a travel history summary with their application which lists all absences outside the UK. If there are serious or compassionate reasons for excess absences (i.e. due to bereavement or work-related absences) with the correct representations it may be possible to mitigate these absences.

Tier 2 settlement applications can be made up to 28 days before the Applicant reaches 5 years continuous leave in the UK.

Using Legal Representation to submit a Tier 2 Work Visa Application

Legal representatives, such as our specialist immigration and visa law firm, are qualified to advise you on immigration law and your immigration status. It is possible to instruct an immigration and visa legal representative to submit a Tier 2 Work Visa application.

Caseworkers at the Home Office are trained to reject applications which are improperly prepared, for example by failing to provide the correct supporting evidence. In order to ensure your Tier 2 Work Visa application succeeds, all necessary documents must be provided.

This can be a significant administrative task and you will need to submit the correct documentary evidence. The UK Immigration Rules are complex and a legal representative can help ensure that your Tier 2 Work Visa application meets the Immigration Rules.

Successful Tier 2 Work Visa Applications

Our team of solicitors and barristers are specialist immigration lawyers who act in your best interest. We offer a client-tailored approach from the outset. From the very first meeting, we will be able to advise you in respect of your immigration status and the merit of your Tier 2 Work Visa application before your matter even reaches the Home Office UK Visa & Immigration department. We can assist you with the preparation and submission of your Tier 2 Work Visa application and ensure that you meet all the requirements of the relevant rules.

We are based in the legal epicentre of London, just across the road from the Royal Courts of Justice in order to ensure we get the best results for our clients. LEXVISA is just minutes away from the Immigration and Asylum Tribunal, the Royal Courts of Justice and other central London courts.

Preparation is the key to a successful Tier 2 Work Visa application. Our UK immigration and visa solicitors are here to guide you through the complex immigration rules and requirements. If you wish to meet one of our lawyers, please call our Immigration Team so we can assess your case and arrange your legal consultation.

Contact our London immigration solicitors on 02071830570 or complete our contact form.

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