UK Skilled worker rules and guidance

Looking to come to the UK for work? The UK welcomes skilled workers from across the world. However, there are going to be new skilled worker rules in place. So far there has been free movement for all EU and EEA citizens coming to the UK. Come January 1, 2021, the free movement of people between the UK and EU is going to end as a result of Brexit. The UK is launching a new immigration system in which everyone outside the UK will be treated equally. This applies to employers in the UK and all non-UK skilled workers whether they are from the EU, EEA, or elsewhere. Now all non-British citizens looking to come to the UK to work will have to apply for and receive permission for it. It is important to note that those EEA and Swiss citizens who are already living in the UK by 31 December 2020 need not apply for a visa. However, such individuals do need to apply for an EU settlement scheme to continue living and working in the UK.

Who can apply through a UK skilled worker route?

Any non-British and non-Irish citizen can apply for the Skilled worker route under the Tier 2 visa category provided they have a confirmed job offer to work in specified occupations with a certificate of sponsorship from a UK employer.

Eligibility for UK Skilled Worker Visa

There has been a point-based system in the UK for obtaining a visa. Currently, skilled workers outside the UK, EEA, and EU apply for Tier 2 visa category to come to work in the UK. This will continue. Now the new immigration rule says that you need to obtain a minimum of 70 points to be able to apply to work in the UK. If you are a non-UK citizen looking to work in the UK, you need to meet the following conditions to be employed by an organization in the UK. There have been new changes in place. Points are given against each criterion and some of them are mandatory while others are tradable in nature. First, let us see the mandatory criteria.

1. You need to have a job offer from an employer in the UK that has a sponsor license from the Home Office – 20 points
2. Your job offer should be at least at the RFQ (Regulations Qualifications Framework) level 3 or above equivalent to A level – 20 points
3. You must speak the English language at the appropriate level at B1 – 10 points

The rest of the conditions are tradable in nature. The list is the following:

1.Your annual salary of minimum £20,480 to £23,039 or at least 80% of the going rate for your profession (whichever is higher) – 0 points
2. Your annual salary of minimum £23,040 to £25,599 or at least 90% of the going rate for your profession (whichever is higher) – 10 points
3. Your annual salary must be at least £25,600 or the ‘going rate’ for the job offer, whichever is higher – 20 points
4. The job you are offered is in a shortage occupation – 20 points
5. If you have a PhD in a subject that is relevant to the job you have been offered – 10 points
6. If you have a PhD in a STEM subject relevant to the job you have been offered – 20 points

So, the first 3 conditions must be met by each one looking to come to the UK for which they get a total of 50 points. For the remaining 20 points, you have the option to trade-off from the tradable conditions.

Other requirements

Applicants must meet the maintenance requirement. They must show that they will be able to support themselves and their families financially when during their stay in the UK. However, an A-rated sponsors can also provide the maintenance cost for the applicants. Applicants also need to pay an immigration healthcare surcharge to be covered under the NHS care.

How to apply?

All applicants can apply online including a smartphone app. But some applicants may have to visit a visa application center.

UK Sponsor license

Employers in the UK must apply for UK Sponsor license to be a sponsor if they wish to hire people from outside the UK from 1 January 2021 and once they get it they need to offer the certificate of sponsorship to the skilled workers who they want to employ in their organization. Employers or sponsors also need to pay immigration skill charges for each skilled worker they hire for their company through the skilled worker route or intracompany transfer route.

If you want to apply for a UK visa under UK Skilled worker route and need expert advice, coontact Visa and Migration Ltd a +44 (0)20 3411 1261

 

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