UK Work Permits

UK Work Permits

A skilled worker visa allows you to come to the UK and work for an approved employer in an eligible job.

Important Travel Document Information – Please Read

Citizens from EU/EFTA nations, Australia, Canada, Japan, and the United States can enter the UK and remain without a visa for up to six months. Travelers can enjoy the UK for tourism, business, or family visits without additional documentation. However, if individuals from these countries intend to work in the United Kingdom, they must apply for a UK Work Visa.

The nature of their profession determines the type of work visa required, the length of their stay, and other considerations. Before submitting an application, conducting research and selecting the appropriate visa category is critical.

UK Work Visa Requirements

Before you can apply for a UK Work Visa, you must meet the following requirements:

  • Have a verified employment offer from a licensed UK employer who will serve as your sponsor.
  • Possess a Sponsorship Certificate provided by your employer.
  • Pass the point-based Evaluation.

To start your application process, please click below.

Types of UK Work Visa

There are typically three sorts of UK work visas, each of which is subdivided into several subcategories.

The principal categories of work visas in the UK are: 

  • Short-term work visas for the United Kingdom.
  • Long-term UK work visas.
  • Entrepreneur, business start-up, and talent visas Temporary UK work visas Short-term work visas are often issued for work placements lasting between six months and one year in the United Kingdom. 

You might be eligible to extend your visa under specific situations. 

Specific forms of employment, typically exempt from the points-based visa system, can qualify for short-term visas.

Short Term UK Work Visas

You can apply for the following visa types to come to the UK and work for different purposes:

Charity Worker temporary visa — for unpaid charitable volunteer labor.

Creative Worker temporary visa - for employment in the creative industries, such as a dancer, actor, musician, or film crew member.

Government Authorised Exchange temporary visa – for training or work experience placements.

International Agreement temporary visa - for employment protected by international law or treaty, such as working for a foreign government.

Religious Worker visa — for non-pastoral religious employment.

Seasonal Worker visa - for employment such as fruit picking, farm labor, or operating heavy cargo vehicles (HGV).

Youth Mobility Scheme visa – for young individuals between the ages of 18 and 30 who have a minimum of £2,530 in liquid assets and meet other eligibility requirements.

Graduate visa - for graduates who wish to continue working in the UK after completing a UK study course.

UK Work Visa Requirements

In addition to the precise work criteria associated with the type of short-term visa, you often need a licensed sponsoring organization to offer you a job.

In most instances, you will also require a minimum of at least £1,270 in funds to support yourself during your stay.

You must be 18 years old to qualify for certain short-term visas.

Notably, most short-term UK work visas, such as unemployment benefits, do not provide access to public funding.

You can get free healthcare through the NHS, but typically, you must pay a healthcare surcharge of up to £624 per year.

Your spouse and dependent children can typically accompany you, but they must submit separate visa applications.

UK Work Visa Length

The majority of short-term visas have a validity of up to two years.

They are typically issued for one year and can be renewed, while certain visas have a validity of two years but are not renewable.

If you have completed your Ph.D. studies, the graduate visa can be for up to three years.

The principal exception to this rule is the seasonal worker visa, which is typically valid for up to six months.

Long-Term UK Work Visas

Typically, these visas can be renewed and suitable for two to five years.

Because these visas allow the bearer to stay in the United Kingdom for a more extended period, typically with the possibility to apply for permanent residence or British citizenship, they require stricter eligibility criteria.

  • Skilled worker visa – for skilled employees who must typically meet minimal standards in the UK’s points-based scheme 
  • Health and Care Worker visa – for medical professionals who wish to work for the National Health Service or in adult social care 
  • Senior or Specialist Worker visa – enables workers of foreign organizations to work at a branch in the United Kingdom. 
  • Minister of Religion visa – for leadership positions within a faith-based organization in the United Kingdom • Visa for International Athletes – for elite athletes and certified coaches. 
  • Representative of an Overseas Business visa – for lone representatives of international companies seeking to establish a branch or subsidiary in the United Kingdom Requirements. 

For detailed information on specific parts of the UK Visa Process, you can refer to the links below to find the answer to your query. If you are unable to find any particular information, please contact us

Other UK Visa Types

A Visa is required for any foreign national wishing to enter the United Kingdom. You can choose from the following:

You must also apply for the Standard Visitor Visa if you plan to study in the United Kingdom for a brief amount of time or if you need to transit through the nation.

 Qualifying for a long-term work visa

To qualify for most long-term work visas in the United Kingdom, including skilled worker employment, you must earn 70 points under the country’s point-based system.

This comprises of criteria that every applicant must meet, namely:

  • Employment offer from a licenced sponsor (20 points) 
  • Job at relevant skill level (20 points) 
  • English proficiency at a minimum level, typically at least B1 on the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR) scale (10 points) 

The remaining 20 points can be obtained from the following: 

  • Salary of £25,600 or the industry standard, whichever is greater (20 points) 
  • Employment in a scarcity occupation (20) 
  • Doctorate in a STEM field pertinent to the position (20) 
  • Compensation between £23,040 and £25,599, or at least 90 percent of the going wage for the occupation, whichever is more (10) 
  • Ph.D. in a non-STEM field pertinent to the position (10). 

Additionally, you must have a minimum of £1,270 in savings to support yourself.

Notably, you can often work up to 20 hours per week in a second job if the work is appropriate and you maintain your current position.

You will not have access to public funding, such as unemployment benefits. Your spouse and dependent children may travel with you, but they must obtain their visas.

Naturally, the minimum pay expectations for various jobs in the UK vary.

Employers must still pay at least £10.10 per hour (or £20,480 per year for jobs in healthcare or education).

The minimum salary for Senior or Specialist Worker visas is £42,400 unless you travel as a Graduate Trainee.

What if my UK Work Visa is Refused

Refusing entry into the UK has an impact on your goals and puts your future in danger. Since the Immigration regulations were changed in 2012, there has been a 19% increase in visa rejections for the United Kingdom. The immigration laws have been strengthened and made tighter. The majority of refusals, though, can be overcome by filing a fresh application or appealing the refusal decision. The appeals procedure varies depending on the type of UK visa you filed for:

Visitor Visa: Unless you have submitted an application as a family visiting, you are not eligible to appeal a visitor visa denial.

All other applicants should submit a new application.

Entry clearance as a spouse or fiancé – While decisions on spouse visas are subject to appeal, it is typically quicker to submit a new application in order to obtain the visa.

Depending on when you submitted your application for permission to remain, you could have the opportunity to appeal.

You will have the option to submit an administrative review under a point-based system. If you’ve been turned down and there isn’t an appeals process available, you might be able to file a Judicial Review.

If any of these reasons above have caused you a visa refusal please contact us.

People Also Asked

Non-UK citizens who wish to work in the UK for a specific employer can do so with the help of a UK Work Permit, often known as a Tier 2 visa. To apply for a UK Work Permit, you must already have a job offer from a UK employer. To be eligible for a Tier 2 visa, the job you are offered must meet certain skill and salary requirements, and the employer must have a sponsor licence, read here for a full explanation of What Is A UK Work Permit?

To be eligible for a UK Work Permit, you must have an employment offer from a UK business, a current Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) from that employer, and meet certain requirements such as proficiency in speaking, reading, and writing English. In addition, to qualify for a visa, you must also work for a Home Office-approved UK employer and obtain a “certificate of sponsorship” from your employer detailing the role you’ve been offered in the UK.

It is important to note that the UK Work Permit scheme has been replaced by the Skilled Worker visa, which requires a job offer from a UK employer with a sponsor licence and meets certain skill and salary requirements. Additionally, to qualify for the Skilled Worker visa, you must perform one of the occupations on the list of eligible jobs and meet the relevant minimum salary threshold for that occupation. You can read this for full UK Work Permit Advice.

According to the UK government’s official guidance, if you are outside the UK and applying for a visa, you should typically receive a decision within 3 weeks once you attend your appointment at the visa application centre. If you are applying for an Ancestry visa. However, the waiting times may vary depending on the type of visa you are applying for and your circumstances.

If you are applying from outside the UK, you can apply and pay for your visa online. For all you need to know about How Long Does It Take To Get A UK Work Permit, read our full article.




The cost of a UK work permit depends on the type of visa and your circumstances. The standard application fee for the Skilled Worker visa ranges from £625 to £1,423, depending on your circumstances.

It is important to note that for some work visas, such as the Intra-company Transfer visa and the Intra-company Graduate Trainee visa, the eligibility criteria include specific salary requirements. For the Intra-company Transfer visa, you must be paid at least £41,500, while for the Intra-company Graduate Trainee visa, you must be paid at least £23,000.

Overall, the cost of a UK work permit depends on the type of visa you are applying for and your circumstances. It is advisable to consult the official UK government websites for the most up-to-date information on visa costs and eligibility criteria.

To get a work permit for the UK, you need to apply for the appropriate work visa based on your circumstances and eligibility criteria. The UK government offers a range of work visas, including the Skilled Worker visa, Graduate visa, Health and Care Worker visa, and others.

The earliest you can usually apply is 3 months before your employment start date. In addition to providing proof of identification, you must submit supporting documents that prove you meet the eligibility requirements for the visa you are applying for.

The specific requirements for obtaining a work permit for the UK will vary depending on the type of visa you are applying for. It is important to carefully review the eligibility criteria and supporting documents required for each visa to ensure you meet the requirements.

To qualify for a work permit in the UK, you must meet certain requirements under the country’s point-based system. The system prioritizes applicants with a job offer from a UK company. Different types of work visas are available, such as the Skilled Worker visa and the Graduate visa, each with specific requirements and eligibility criteria.

To obtain a Skilled Worker visa, for example, you must have a job offer from a Home Office-approved UK employer, and your job must be at a certain skill level. You must also meet the English language requirements and score enough points in the system to be eligible.

In addition to meeting the eligibility criteria, you must provide certain documents when you apply for a work visa. This includes a certificate of sponsorship reference number, proof of your knowledge of English, and other supporting documents as required by the specific visa you are applying for.

If you do not have a job offer, you may be able to apply for other types of visas, such as business or investment visas. It is important to carefully review the eligibility criteria and supporting documents required for each visa to ensure you meet the requirements.

Generally, it is impossible to convert a Visitor Visa To A Work Visa In The UK or any other immigration route while in the country. However, there are a few exceptions, such as prospective entrepreneurs who can switch from a visitor visa to an Innovator visa after securing funding.

If you are already in the UK on a different type of visa, such as a Tier 5 Youth Mobility visa. In that case, you might be able to apply to switch to a Skilled Worker visa if you have a job offer from a Home Office-approved UK employer and meet the other eligibility criteria. However, it is important to note that this is not possible for all types of visas.

It is generally advisable to carefully review the eligibility criteria for each type of visa and plan accordingly to ensure you have the appropriate visa before traveling to the UK.

If you are on a Skilled Worker visa or a Tier 2 (General) work visa, you may be able to stay in the UK after your Work Visa Expires if you meet certain eligibility criteria, such as having the same job as when you were given your previous visa. Your visa can last for up to 5 years before you need to extend it, and you’ll need to apply to extend or update your visa when it expires or if you change jobs or employers.

If you are on a Standard Visitor visa, you may be able to extend your stay as long as the total time you spend in the UK is no more than 6 months, and you meet the eligibility requirements and pay the £1000 fee. However, it is important to note that visitor visas are not designed for long-term stays or work purposes.

It is generally advisable to carefully review the eligibility criteria for each type of visa and plan accordingly to ensure you have the appropriate visa before traveling to the UK.

Getting a UK work visa can be difficult depending on the type of visa and the specific requirements for each visa. Applicants generally need a job offer from a licensed sponsor which meets minimum skill and salary requirements. The UK has a points-based system for work visas, which assesses the applicant’s skills, qualifications, and experience. Some work visas have additional requirements, such as language proficiency, financial savings, and a tuberculosis test. However, with the right qualifications and support from an employer, obtaining a UK work permit is possible.

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