Can a Tier 4 Student switch to a Tier 2 General Work visa from within the UK?

As a Tier 4 Student, you can apply to switch to a Tier 2 General Work visa without having to leave the United Kingdom once your studies come to an end. The Tier 2 General Work visa is a route which enables employers in the United Kingdom to hire suitable workers from outside the EEA to fill specialist job roles. Employers must respect the nature of the policy by ensuring they do not displace domestic workers. Therefore, employers must ensure they employ a migrant worker to fill a particular job role which cannot be filled by a settled domestic worker.     

What are the requirements to switch from a Tier 4 Student to Tier 2 General Work Visa?

A Tier 4 Student can apply to transfer/switch to a Tier 2 General Work visa once they have completed their studies. A Tier 4 Student can only switch if at the time of their application they are sponsored by an approved higher education provider with a track record of compliance.  Tier 4 Students are required to have completed their course or are applying no more than months before the expected date of completion. Their course must be leading to a recognised bachelor’s or master’s degree. Tier 4 Students studying a PhD can apply after completing 12 months’ of study. Tier 4 Students must submit their original degree certificate with their Tier 2 General Work visa application.

Before submitting an application to switch Applicants must ensure they have a job offer from a Tier 2 Sponsor Licenced employer. The Tier 2 employer must issue a Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS). Applicants can check what type of licence a prospective employer may hold using the UKVI Register of Sponsors. Applicants will also need to submit evidence showing that they meet the maintenance requirement by showing they have held at least £945 for a consecutive 90 day period. Alternatively, Applicants can ask their employer to certify their maintenance. A certification of maintenance means Applicants will not need to show any cash savings towards the maintenance as a part of their application. Applicants can rely on their degree to meet the English language requirement.

What are the benefits of switching from a Tier 4 Student to Tier 2 General Work Visa?

There are a number of benefits for both Tier 4 Students and Tier 2 employers when it comes to moving from a student visa to a Tier 2 General work visa (if applied from within the United Kingdom).  The biggest advantage is that Tier 2 employers are exempt from conducting the Resident Labour Market Test (RLMT) if they assign the Certificate of Sponsorship to a Tier 4 Student. The purpose of the Resident Labour Market Test is to ensure that no settled worker is displaced. The Resident Labour Market Test requires all Tier 2 employers to advertise the job for at least 28 days in an attempt to identify settled workers who may be suitable for the job.

Tier 2 employers are not required to pay the Immigration Skills Charge. The current rate for the skills charge varies depending on the size of the sponsor. Another benefit is that the Certificate of Sponsorship is not subject to a national annual limit; therefore, the Certificate of Sponsorship is likely to be issued quicker. The Tier 2 General Work visa could lead to settlement in the United Kingdom. Tier 4 Dependents can also switch into a visa in their own right or continue to be dependent on their primary Sponsor.

It is important to contact our specialist immigration team before switching from a Tier 4 Student Visa into a Tier 2 Work Visa as the UK’s Immigration Rules are complex and can be difficult to understand. We have a great deal of experience and success with Applicants switching visas from within the UK and it is important for Applicants to get a successful result and not risk any visa application being refused due to not fully understanding the requirements.

Using Legal Representation to switch from a Tier 4 Student visa to a Tier 2 General Work Visa

Legal representatives, such as our specialist immigration and visa law firm, are qualified to advise you on immigration law and your immigration matter. You can instruct one of our immigration and visa legal representatives to successfully assist you with switching from a Tier 4 Student visa to a Tier 2 General Work Visa. Our solicitors and Barristers will help you comply with the Home Office’s requirements and meet the Immigration Rules.

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 switch from Tier 4 Student visa into Tier 2 General Work Visa application succeeds, our solicitors and barristers will ensure all specified documents must be provided.

The UK Immigration Rules are complex and a legal representative can help ensure that your application meets the Immigration Rules.

Successfully Switch from Tier 4 Student visa into Tier 2 General Work Visa

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 prospects of switching from a Tier 4 Student visa into Tier 2 General Work Visa application before your application even reaches the Home Office UK Visa & Immigration department. We can assist you with the preparation and submission of your Tier 4 Student visa into Tier 2 General 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.  We are minutes away from the Immigration and Asylum Tribunal, the Royal Courts of Justice and other central London courts.

Preparation is the key to successful immigration applications. 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 to discuss a Tier 4 Student visa into Tier 2 General Work Visa application.

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

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