Since 1 January 2021, the UK Government has made wholesale changes to the immigration system in the UK introducing a new Points Based System under the Skilled Worker Visa Route replacing the former Tier 2 (General) Work Visa. The Skilled Worker Visa scheme applied to both non-EU nationals and EU nationals that have entered the UK since the scheme was introduced on 1 January 2021. In order to qualify and be successfully granted the Skilled Worker Visa, the Applicant must achieve a total score of 70 points comprising of 50 mandatory points and 20 tradeable points. In order to settle in the UK under the Skilled Worker Visa Route, the Applicant must have remained in the UK under the Skilled Worker Visa Route for a continuous period of 5 years.
What is the Skilled Worker Visa?
The UK Skilled Worker Visa Route is a new Points Based System under the Immigration Rules that had replaced the old Tier 2 (General) Visa routes for working in the UK. The UK Home Office has published a list of occupations that qualify for the Skilled Worker Visa Route, which are usually high-ranking managerial positions or highly skilled professional occupations. Each qualifying job is assigned an occupation code and the eligible job must be specified under the relevant occupation code to qualify for the Skilled Worker Visa Route. You can the full list of occupations and the occupation codes in the Immigration Rules Appendix Skilled Occupations.
Requirements for Skilled Worker Visa
The requirements under the Skilled Worker Visa Route are split into 4 stages:
PLEASE NOTE that: you cannot apply in the UK and switch into the Skilled Worker Visa if your last grant of permission was in the following visa categories:
The exact requirements you will need to satisfy will vary depending on your circumstances. You may want to speak to our expert immigration lawyers for legal advice.
How do you achieve the Mandatory 50 Points under the Skilled Worker Visa Route?
As explained above, the 70 points under the Skilled Worker Visa Route comprise of 50 mandatory points and 20 tradeable points. The 50 mandatory points are awarded as follows:
Sponsorship – 20 Points:
In order to be granted 20 points for Sponsorship, your application must be sponsored by a Sponsor that is registered with the UK Home Office on the Register of Licensed Sponsors. You must check that your Sponsor is registered on the Register of Licensed Sponsor before you apply. If your Sponsor has not yet obtained a UK Sponsor Licence, our Immigration Solicitors and Barristers can help your Sponsor apply for a UK Sponsor Licence. Please see our article on “Apply for a UK Sponsor Licence to employ overseas workers in the UK since the changes introduced on 1 January 2021” for more information.
In addition, the UK Home Office must be satisfied that:
Job at Appropriate Skill Level – 20 Points:
In order to be granted 20 points for a Job at an appropriate skill level, your application must be sponsored for a job in eligible job occupation code listed in the Appendix Skilled Occupations. The Sponsor must choose an appropriate job occupation code and the UK Home Office must not have reasonable grounds to believe that the Sponsor has chosen a less appropriate job occupation code for any of the following reasons:
The UK Home Office can also apply a Genuine Vacancy consideration to the application and refuse the application if it is not satisfied that:
English Language – 10 points:
In order to be granted 10 points for English Language, your application must be supported by a recognised English Language test from a UK Home Office approved provider that shows that you have achieved in all 4 components (reading, writing, speaking and listening) at least CEFR level B1 or above.
How do you achieve the Tradeable 20 Points under the Skilled Worker Visa Route?
The UK Home Office has provided 6 Tradeable Options in order to achieve the additional 20 Tradeable Points needed to be granted the Skilled Worker Visa, which is the mainly to do with the required Salary Level for the job. These options are as follows:
If you fail to satisfy the requirements for the 20 Tradeable Points, then your application will be refused.
How much does the Skilled Worker Visa cost?
The application fees for the Skilled Worker Visa Route are as follows:
These fees are further reduced by £55.00 if the applicant is from one of the qualifying countries.
In addition the above application fees, you will have to pay the Immigration Health Charge fees at around £624.00 per year and show that you can meet the Financial Requirement.
Can you obtain settlement under the Skilled Worker Visa Route?
Yes, in order to settle in the UK under the Skilled Worker Visa Route, you need to have remained in the UK under the Skilled Worker Visa Route or in combination with other qualifying work and business visa routes for a continuous period of 5 years.
Making a Skilled Worker Visa application with OneLaw Chambers
At OneLaw Chambers, our immigration solicitors and barristers regularly assist with Skilled Worker Visa applications in order for applicants to remain and settle in the UK. We have assisted many foreign national applicants to prepare and submit successful Skilled Worker Visa applications and we have represented clients from all over the world.
Whether you require expert immigration advice on the requirements of the Immigration Rules, an independent immigration assessment of your prospects of qualifying for a Skilled Worker Visa or professional immigration representation with preparing your Skilled Worker Visa immigration application, our immigration solicitors and barristers can help you.
We are committed to ensuring that our immigration solicitors and barristers prepare every immigration visa application with utmost quality and skill so that successful outcome is achieved every time. Our immigration solicitors and barristers operate in a friendly and cooperative manner to provide our clients with the best client care and service during the entire immigration application process.
To discuss your Skilled Worker Visa application with one our immigration solicitors and barristers, please contact our Immigration lawyers on 0207 489 2044 / 0208 616 1819 or complete our enquiry form with your details.