Skilled Worker & ICT

Skilled Worker

Skilled Worker visa has replaced the Tier 2 (General) work visa with effect from 01 December 2020. Skilled Worker Visa needs an employer who holds a valid Skilled Worker Sponsor Licence to sponsor migrants applying from overseas or who are already in the UK on a work visa or students who have completed studies.

Undefined and Defined CoS

Annual Allocation of Undefined CoS is made at the beginning of the year with effect from 06 April. These will be used for migrants who are already in the UK.

Defined CoS are required for anyone applying for a Skilled Worker visa from overseas. Sponsors must apply for Defined CoS on a case to case basis as and when they require one. If the Home Office considers your requirement is straightforward, the request should be granted within 24 hours. However, Home Office can seek more information and the process could take more time.

Attributes

To sponsor someone employers must offer full 100% of the going rate of salary under Option A, if the candidate is not eligible for tradeable options.  If the sponsored employee is a Ph.D. degree holder, he/she can be sponsored under tradeable Option B by offering 90% of the going rate.  If a candidate holds a Ph.D. degree in a STEM subject (Science, Technology, Engineering or Mathematics), he/she can be sponsored with 80% of going rate of salary under Option C).  This visa rules are applicable to both EEA and non-EEA Nationals. All migrants must score 70 points to qualify for this work visa in the following attributes:

AttributesPoints
Sponsorship by employer20
Appropriate skill level (SoC)20
Appropriate salary20
English Language10

 

The minimum salary threshold is £25,600.00.  The normal minimum salary threshold should be 100% of the “going rate” for a job title. The salary offered should be equal or exceed both £25,600.00 and the going rate for a particular job title. This figure can be as low as £20,480.00 provided the migrant is able to score overall 70 points.

Eligibility

  • You have a ‘certificate of sponsorship’ from your employer with information about the role you’ve been offered in the UK.
  • You do a job that’s on the list of eligible occupations.
  • You are to be paid a minimum salary depending your job title.
  • You should provide evidence of your English Language ability.
  • Minimum Educational level required is RQF 3.
  • Maintenance for the first month of arrival to be certified by the sponsor or you hold sufficient funds for the same.

 

Doctors, Nurses and other Health and Social Care workers do not need to pay the annual immigration health surcharge and therefore, costs them less when they apply.

Settlement – Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR)

Your visa can last for up to 5 years before you need to extend it. You’ll need to apply to extend or update your visa when it expires or if you change jobs or employer. After 5 years of continuous stay in the UK, you may be able to apply “Indefinite leave to remain” to settle permanently in the UK.

Intra-Company Transfers (ICT) visa

This visa has replaced the Tier 2 (Intra-company Transfer) Long-term Staff visa with effect from 01 December 2020. A migrant should have worked for at least 12 months overseas for the same group of companies or a branch to be eligible for ICT visa and will be permitted to hold ICT leave for up to 5 years in any 6-year rolling period. Where an ICT migrant is paid a minimum salary of £73,900.00, he/she will be permitted to hold ICT visa up to 9 years in any 10-year period as High Earners.  High Earners need not have worked 12 months overseas for the sponsor’s group to qualify for ICT visa.

 

Those admitted through this route will, however, be permitted to switch into the Skilled Worker route whilst still in the UK if they meet the qualifying requirements for that route.

Intra-company Graduate Trainee visa (ICGT)

If you’re applying for an Intra-company Graduate Trainee visa you can stay in the UK with an ICGT visa for up to 12 months.  You cannot extend your visa, but you can apply for another Intra-company Graduate Trainee visa from outside the UK. The maximum total stay allowed for an Intra-company Graduate Trainee visa is 5 years in any 6-year period. If you have already been in the UK with an Intra-company visa before your application, that time will be included in your total stay.

Intra-Company Transfers Routes

There are two categories Intra-Company visa routes. 1)  Intra-Company Transfers (ICT) visa and 2) Intra-Company Graduate Trainee visa (ICGT). Settlement (Indefinite Leave to Remain) is not permitted under this route.

Eligibility

To be eligible for an Intra-company visa you need to:

  • have a valid certificate of sponsorship from your employer
  • have worked for your employer outside the UK for a minimum period – 3 months of ICGT, 12 months for ICT.  This requirement is exempt for High Earners
  • do a job that’s on the list of eligible occupations
  • be paid the minimum eligible salary required for your job
  • Maintenance for the first month of arrival to be certified by the sponsor or you hold sufficient funds for the same.

Salary requirements

If you are applying for an Intra-company Transfer visa you must be paid at least £41,500 or the ‘going rate’ for your job – whichever is higher. Tradeable options are not applicable for ICT visas.

If you’re applying for an Intra-company Graduate Trainee visa you must be paid at least £23,000 or 70% of the ‘going rate’ for your job – whichever is higher.

Switching Skilled Worker/ICT Visas

You cannot apply to switch to Skilled Worker and ICT visas if you are currently in the UK on a visit visa, short-term student, parent of a child student, seasonal worker, domestic worker visas or on immigration bail or you were given permission to stay outside the immigration rules, for example on compassionate grounds.

Timelines for getting a decision

If you apply outside the UK a decision will usually be made within 3 weeks.

If you apply in the UK a decision will usually be made within 8 weeks of your application date if you use the standard service. If you use the priority service a decision will usually be given in 5 working days after biometric enrolment.

For more information and assistance please contact us.