The Tier 2 work visa category allows UK employers holding Tier 2 sponsor licence to recruit skilled workers to fill a particular vacancy they cannot fill with a worker from the UK domestic workforce. To be eligible under Tier 2 work visa, the applicant must have a:

  • skilled job offer
  • certificate of sponsorship from an organisation that is a licensed sponsor in the UK

Need legal help and assistance with Tier 2 work visa for the UK? Contact our expert team of Tier 2 visa solicitors for fast friendly, reliable and fixed fee legal services for Tier 2 work visas. Ask a question to our expert team of Tier 2 visa solicitors for free immigration advice.

Priority Service For Tier 2 Visa From Outside The UK

Our expert team of Tier 2 visa solicitors can provide priority service for your Tier 2 visa entry clearance application to be decided within 5 working days instead of standard service time of 3 to 4 weeks. The Home Office UKVI has also introduced Super Priority Service (decision within 24 hours) for Tier 2 visa entry clearance application for a very few countries around the world.

Super Priority Service (Decision Within 24 Hours) For Tier 2 Visa From Inside The UK

As the expert team of Tier 2 visa solicitors based in London & Manchester and Birmingham we are registered with the Home Office, UK Visas & Immigration (UKVI) and its commercial partners UKVCAS Sopra Steria to provide Super Priority Service (decision within 24 hours) for your in-country Tier 2 work visa application whereby decision on your Tier 2 work visa application will be made by the Home Office UKVI within 24 hours of the enrolment of your biometrics at a designated service centre.

Our Tier 2 work visa solicitors can prepare and submit your Tier 2 work visa application to the Home Office, UKVI through Super Priority Service (SPS) and get decision on your Tier 2 work visa application within 24 hours. This way, you will not have to wait for the decision on your Tier 2 work visa application for months (sometimes years).

Tier 2 General Work Visa UK

The Tier 2 (General) category is for foreign nationals who have been offered a skilled job to fill a gap in the workforce that cannot be filled by a settled worker. An application for Tier 2 General leave can be made to the Home Office, UKVI after a licenced Tier 2 Sponsor (employer approved by the Home Office, UKVI to employ a foreign worker) has obtained a Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) to sponsor a foreign worker's stay in the UK. Tier 2  General is a Point Based System (PBS) visa Category and points can be awarded for the Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS), Appropriate Salary, English language and funds for maintenance.

If you want to apply for Tier 2 General visa, you must be sponsored by a UK employer who has the Tier 2 General sponsor licence. The applicant must comply with all the requirements of codes of practice for employers as set out in Appendix J of the Immigration Rules including the job level, minimum salary etc.

Ask a question to our expert team of Tier 2 General visa solicitors for free immigration advice concerning your Tier 2 General visa application. Contact our expert team of Tier 2 General visa solicitors for fast, friendly, reliable and fixed fee legal services for Tier 2 General work visa applications which include the following:

Tier 2 General Work Visa Entry Clearance UK
Switching Into Tier 2 General Work Visa UK
Extension/Renewal Of Tier 2 General Work Visa UK
ILR As Tier 2 General Migrant

Tier 2 Minister Of Religion Work Visa UK

You can apply for a Tier 2 (Minister of Religion) visa if you have been offered a job within a faith community (for example as a minister of religion, missionary, or member of a religious order) in the UK. An application for Tier 2 Minister of Religion work visa can be made to the Home Office, UKVI after a licenced Tier 2 Sponsor (employer approved by the Home Office, UKVI to employ a foreign worker) has obtained a Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) to sponsor a foreign worker's stay in the UK. If you want to apply for Tier 2 Minister of Religion work visa, you must be sponsored by a UK employer who has the Tier 2 Minister of Religion sponsor licence.

Ask a question to our expert team of Tier 2 Minister of Religion visa solicitors for free immigration advice concerning your Tier 2 Minister of Religion work visa application. Contact our expert team of Tier 2 visa solicitors for fast, friendly, reliable and fixed fee legal services for Tier 2 Minister of Religion work visa applications which include the following:

Tier 2 Minister Of Religion Work Visa Entry Clearance UK
Switching Into Tier 2 Minister Of Religion Work Visa UK
Extension/Renewal Of Tier 2 Minister Of Religion Work Visa UK
ILR As Tier 2 Minister Of Religion

Tier 2 Sportsperson Visa UK

You can apply for a Tier 2 Sportsperson work visa if all of the following apply:

  • you’re an elite sportsperson or qualified coach, who’s recognised by your sport’s governing body as being at the highest level of your profession internationally;
  • your sport’s governing body is endorsing your application;
  • your employment will develop your sport in the UK at the highest level;
  • you meet the other eligibility requirements.

Your sponsor is the governing body endorsing your application. They’ll assign you a certificate of sponsorship to prove they’re sponsoring you. Ask a question to our expert team of Tier 2 Sportsperson visa solicitors for free immigration advice concerning your Tier 2 Sportsperson work visa application. Contact our expert team of Tier 2 visa solicitors for fast, friendly, reliable and fixed fee legal services for Tier 2 Sportsperson work visa applications which include the following:

Tier 2 Sportsperson Work Visa Entry Clearance UK
Switching Into Tier 2 Sportsperson Work Visa UK
Extension/Renewal Of Tier 2 Sportsperson Work Visa UK
ILR As Tier 2 Sportsperson

Tier 2 Intra Company Transfer (ICT) Work Visa UK

You can apply for a Tier 2 (Intra-company Transfer) visa if your overseas employer has offered you a role in a UK branch of the organisation. If you want to apply for Tier 2 ICT work visa, you must be sponsored by a UK employer who has the Tier 2 ICT sponsor licence. Ask a question to our expert team of Tier 2 ICT visa solicitors for free immigration advice concerning your Tier 2 ICT visa application. Contact our expert team of Tier 2 ICT visa solicitors for fast, friendly, reliable and fixed fee legal services for Tier 2 ICT work visa applications which include the following:

Tier 2 ICT Work Visa Entry Clearance UK
Switching Into Tier 2 ICT Work Visa UK
Extension/Renewal Of Tier 2 ICT Work Visa UK
ILR As Tier 2 ICT Migrant

FAQs - Tier 2 General Visa Entry Clearance UK

How can I apply for Tier 2 General Visa Entry Clearance from outside the UK?

You can apply for Tier 2 General visa entry clearance for UK online. You’ll need to have your fingerprints and photograph taken at a visa application centre (to get a biometric residence permit) as part of your Tier 2 General visa entry clearance application.

You’ll have to collect your biometric residence permit within 10 days of when you said you’d arrive in the UK.

What is the job skill level required for Tier 2 General visa entry clearance?

For Tier 2 General visa entry clearance, the Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) assigned by your prospective employer must confirm that:

What is Shortage Occupations List (SOL) for Tier 2 General visa for UK?

The shortage occupation list is an official list of occupations as given in Appendix K of the Immigration Rules for which there are not enough resident workers to fill job vacancies. The shortage occupation lists are recommended by the Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) and are revised periodically.

You will be awarded 30 points if your job was on a shortage occupation list at the time your Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) was assigned by your Tier 2 General sponsor.

There is one list for the whole of the UK and a further additional list for Scotland. If you want to be awarded points for a job on the shortage occupation list in Scotland, you must be undertaking that job in Scotland.

You should confirm with your Tier 2 General sponsor that they have indicated that your job is a shortage occupation in the relevant field on the Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS). You should also confirm with your Tier 2 General sponsor that the SOC code and job description on the Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) show that the job is one of those included on the shortage occupation list.

In general, if a role is on the shortage occupation list, your sponsor is not required to advertise the position.

Can I apply for Tier 2 General visa entry clearance as a New Entrant?

Yes, it is possible to apply for Tier 2 General visa entry clearance from outside the UK as a New Entrant. According to Appendix J of the Immigration Ruels, new entrant salary rate will apply if the Tier 2 General applicant:

  • was under the age of 26 on the date the application was made; and
  • is applying for entry clearance or leave to remain (not for indefinite leave to remain); and
  • is not applying for a grant of leave that would extend his total stay in Tier 2 beyond 3 years and 1 month.

What is the processing time for Tier 2 General visa entry clearance application?

If you apply for Tier 2 General visa entry clearance using standard service, your Tier 2 General visa application is likely to be decided in about 3 weeks.

If you apply for Tier 2 General visa entry clearance using priority service, your Tier 2 General visa application is likely to be decided within 5 working days.

What if my prospective employer does not have the Tier 2 General sponsor licence to sponsor me for Tier 2 General visa for UK?

If your prospective employer does not have the Tier 2 General sponsor licence to sponsor you for your Tier 2 General visa entry clearance, our expert team of sponsor licence solicitors can help your prospective employer to apply for Tier 2 General sponsor licence so that your employer is able to sponsor you for Tier 2 General visa entry clearance for UK.

What is the minimum salary requirement for Tier 2 General visa entry clearance application?

You’ll usually need to be paid at least £30,000 per year or the ‘appropriate rate’ for the job you’re offered - whichever is higher. Check the appropriate rate for the job you’ve been offered.

Check the Tier 2 General Policy Guidance for situations when you can be paid less - for example if:

  • you’ll work as a medical radiographer, nurse, paramedic or secondary school teacher in some subjects
  • you’ll work as a pre-registration nurse or midwife

What is a Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) for Tier 2 General visa for UK?

A certificate of sponsorship (CoS) holds your personal details and information about the job you’ve been offered. It’s an electronic record, not a paper document. Your sponsor will give you a certificate of sponsorship (CoS) reference number to add to your Tier 2 General visa application.

You can only use your certificate of sponsorship (CoS) reference number once. You must use your Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) within 3 months of the date it is assigned to you.

Can I sponsor my dependants to accompany me to the UK or join me in the UK?

Your dependants i.e. spouse or children under the age  of 18 can either apply at same time when you apply for Tier 2 General visa entry clearance to accompany you to the UK OR they can apply for entry clearance separately to join you in the UK later on.

How can I find a list of licenced Tier 2 General sponsors?

The Home Office UKVI maintains a list of licenced Tier 2 General sponsors. The list of Tier 2 sponsors is also known as register of Tier 2 sponsors.

What is Tier 2 General annual limit?

There is an annual limit on the number of Certificates of Sponsorship (CoS) available under Tier 2 (General). This limit applies to Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) for those nationals seeking entry clearance to the UK under the Tier 2 (General) category and those who are applying to switch into the Tier 2 (General) category from within the UK as a dependant of a Tier 4 (General) student. Home Office UKVI refer to these as “restricted” Certificates of Sponsorship (CoS).

The applications below are not subject to annual limit. Certificates of Sponsorship (CoS) for these applications are known as “unrestricted” and sponsors can assign these without first applying for permission:

  • if you are sponsored for a job as a doctor or nurse (SOC codes 2211 and 2231)
  • if you are sponsored for a job at PhD level listed in table 1 of Appendix J to the Immigration Rules
  • if you are sponsored for a job with a salary of £159,600 or above
  • if you are sponsored for a job connected with the inward investment provisions
  • all in-country applications (with the exception of Tier 4 dependant switchers).

The annual limit on the number of Certificates of Sponsorship (CoS) is applied by the Home Office UKVI through monthly allocation of restricted Certificates of Sponsorship (CoS).

How do you satisfy inward investment criteria for using unrestricted Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) for Tier 2 General visa Entry Clearance application?

Your job will satisfy the inward investment provisions if:

  • it is connected with the relocation of a high value business to the UK or a significant new inward investment project, and
  • your sponsor was registered in the UK with Companies House no earlier than three years before the date the Certificate of Sponsorship was assigned, and
  • your sponsor is the registered branch or wholly owned subsidiary of a business which has its headquarters and principal place of business outside the UK, and
  • the relocation or inward investment involves new capital expenditure of £27 million or the creation of at least 21 new UK jobs, and
  • your job does not involve the supply of services to a third party client.

Can I apply for Tier 2 General visa entry clearance as an uregistered nurse or midwife?

If you are applying for Tier 2 General worker visa to work in the UK as a nurse or midwife and are not yet registered with the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC), you must have passed the NMC’s Computer Based Test (CBT) or your Tier 2 General visa entry clearance application will be refused. You must provide evidence from the NMC to demonstrate this.

Furthermore, your Tier 2 General sponsor must also confirm that you will sit an Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE) within 3 months of your stated employment start date.

If you need to pass your OSCE, your Tier 2 General sponsor must tell the Home Office UKVI within 10 working days:

  • If you fail your OSCE but arrange a re-sit and they still want to sponsor you if you pass. They must tell the Home Office UKVI the date of your re-sit.
  • If you re-sit your OSCE and fail for the second time, they must tell the Home Office UKVI. They must also stop sponsoring you if you do not obtain full NMC registration within 8 months of the start date on your Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS). If you have moved sponsors but were previously granted Tier 2 General leave as a nurse or midwife, the 8 months will start from the start date of your previous employment.
  • If you pass your OSCE, they must tell Home Office UKVI the date you will start working for them as a registered nurse or midwife.
  • If they decide at any point that they no longer wish to sponsor you. For example, if you fail your first OSCE and they do not want to wait until you have done a re-sit.

You are able to make 3 attempts to pass the OSCE. If you fail your first attempt at OSCE, you can re-sit it after ten days. If you fail it a second time, you will have the opportunity to sit for a third time, waiting 3 months to allow for further preparation. If you fail for a third time, you will be unable to re-sit the OSCE until 6 months have passed since your previous unsuccessful test and will have to re-apply to the NMC.

If you are already in the UK with entry clearance or leave to remain and your sponsor stops sponsoring you, Home Office UKVI will reduce (curtail) your leave.

For how long will I be granted Entry Clearance for Tier 2 General visa for UK?

You will be granted Tier 2 General visa entry clearance according to the start date and end date of your job as given in your Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS). The maximum period for which your employer can sponsor you for your Tier 2 Geneal visa entry clearance application is 5 years. You can extend your Tier 2 General visa further for one more year after 5 years which means the maximum time a person can spend in the UK under Tier 2 General visa category is 6 years in total.

Normally, most applicants are able to apply for ILR as Tier 2 General Migrants 28 days before completion of 5 years in the UK with leave to remain as Tier 2 General Migrant.

What is the cooling off period for Tier 2 General visa entry clearance?

Cooling off period for Tier 2 General for someone who has been in the UK in the past with Tier 2 visa is normally 12 months.

According to Home Office UKVI Tier 2 Policy Guidance, if you have had a grant of leave for entry clearance, leave to enter or remain as a Tier 2 Migrant at any time during the 12 months immediately before your date of application, unless you were only being sponsored in Tier 2 (as recorded by the Certificate of Sponsorship) for a period of 3 months or less, you will not be able to apply for further leave under Tier 2 unless one of the following applies:

  • you were not in the UK with leave as a Tier 2 Migrant at any time during the above 12 month period immediately before your date of application and you can provide evidence to prove this; or
  • the salary for the job that the Certificate of Sponsorship Checking Service shows you are being sponsored to do (including any allowances listed as acceptable for this purpose in paragraph 79 of Appendix A to the Immigration Rules) is £159,600 or higher.

In all cases where the Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS)) was assigned for longer than 3 months, the cooling off period will apply, even in cases where your length of stay in the UK is less than 3 months. For instance, where you were assigned a Certificate of Sponsorship of 6 months in length and the Home Office UKVI were notified that you ceased working in the UK after 2 months, the cooling-off period will apply as the Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) was assigned for more than 3 months.

Do I have to provide the Overseas Criminal Record Certificate for my Tier 2 General visa entry clearance for UK?

If you are applying for Tier 2 (General) entry clearance and are coming to work in the education, health and social care sectors, you must provide an Overseas criminal Record Certificate as part of your application.

Overseas criminal Record Certificates must be provided for any country in which you have resided for 12 months or more (whether continuously or in total) in the last 10 years prior to your Tier 2 General entry clearance application, while aged 18 or over.

The requirement to provide Overseas criminal Record Certificate applies where your occupation is defined by one of the following Standard Occupation Classification (SOC) codes:

  • 1181 - Health services and public health managers and directors
  • 1184 - Social services managers and directors
  • 2211 - Medical practitioners
  • 2212 - Psychologists
  • 2213 - Pharmacists
  • 2214 - Ophthalmic opticians
  • 2215 - Dental practitioners
  • 2217 - Medical radiographers
  • 2218 - Podiatrists
  • 2219 - Health professionals not elsewhere classified
  • 2221 - Physiotherapists
  • 2222 - Occupational therapists
  • 2223 - Speech and language therapists
  • 2229 - Therapy professionals not elsewhere classified
  • 2231 - Nurses
  • 2232 - Midwives
  • 2312 - Further education teaching professionals
  • 2314 - Secondary education teaching professionals
  • 2315 - Primary and nursery education teaching professionals
  • 2316 - Special needs education teaching professionals
  • 2317 - Senior professionals of educational establishments
  • 2318 - Education advisers and school inspectors
  • 2319 - Teaching and other educational professionals not elsewhere classified
  • 2442 - Social workers
  • 2443 - Probation officers
  • 2449 - Welfare professionals not elsewhere classified

If the requirement to provide Overseas criminal Record Certificate is applicable, you must provide:

  • a criminal record certificate for each country (excluding the UK) where you have resided for 12 months or more in the last 10 years (whether continuously or in total), while aged 18 or over, issued by the relevant overseas authority;
  • a translated copy of any certificate that is not in English, in line with Home Office UKVI requirements.

Guidance on how you can obtain certificates is available at: www.gov.uk/government/publications/criminal-records-checks-for-overseas-applicants

Where a country is not included in the above guidance, you should not assume that there is no process for obtaining a certificate. You should contact the Embassy or High Commission in the relevant country for more information.

Certificates from your most recent country of residence will normally only be considered valid if they have been issued no earlier than 6 months before your application date. Certificates from countries prior to your most recent country of residence must normally cover the entire period of residency (up to 10 years prior the application date) but will otherwise be considered valid indefinitely.

If you are unable to obtain a certificate covering the required period, you must explain in your Tier 2 General entry clearance application what attempts you have made to obtain a certificate and why this has not been possible.

If you do not explain why you are unable to provide a certificate, the Entry Clearance Officer (ECO) may contact you or your legal representative in writing and you must provide any further evidence within 28 calendar days.

How are the points awarded for appropriate salary in an application for Tier 2 General visa entry clearance?

You will be awarded the following points for the appropriate salary offered by your sponsor. These bands are before tax (gross) and yearly.

Salary Points
£30,000 or the appropriate rate for the job, whichever is the higher 20
If you are considered to be a “new entrant”:
£20,800 or the appropriate rate for the job, whichever is the higher
20

If your Certificate of Sponsorship is for one of the following occupations:

  • Medical radiographers (2217)
  • Nurses (2231) – please see below for nurses in a supervised practice placement
  • Secondary education teaching professionals – subject teachers in maths, physics, chemistry, computer science and Mandarin only (2314)
  • Paramedics (3213)

£20,800 or the appropriate rate for the job, whichever is the higher

20

You are being sponsored as a pre-registration candidate nurse or midwife and:

  • you will be paid at least Agenda for Change Band 3 rate (the appropriate rate for a pre-registration nurse);
  • you will continue to be sponsored as a nurse or midwife by the sponsor after achieving Nursing and Midwifery Council registration;
  • your salary will not be less than Agenda for Change Band 5 rate (the appropriate rate for a registered nurse or midwife) once that registration is achieved.

In addition, you must be paid at or above the relevant salary threshold once you have your registration confirmed – nurses are exempt from the £30,000 threshold, but midwives are not.

20
Under £30,000 and none of the above apply 0

When does an exemption from the Resident Labour Market Test (RLMT) apply for Tier 2 General visa entry clearance application?

The Resident Labour Market Test does not apply if the job offer is:

  • in a supernumerary research position where you have been issued a non-transferrable scientific research Award or Fellowship either:
    • by a third party organisation, and the Award or Fellowship cannot be transferred to anyone else; or
    • by your Sponsor if the following requirements are met:
      • you have been selected through a competitive process on the basis of your own research proposal; and
      • the funding of the research is secured in an agreement between your Sponsor and a third party organisation, which includes objectively justified requirements that effectively prohibit any settled worker from undertaking the role.

This exemption continues to apply after the relevant third party funding has ended, as long as you are being sponsored to continue to undertake the same research; or

  • to continue working as a Doctor or Dentist in training, under the same NHS Training Number which was assigned to you for previous lawful employment as a Doctor or Dentist in Training in the UK, including where you are applying to return to your training after an out of programme experience; or
  • as a Doctor in Speciality Training and your salary and the costs of your training are being met by the government of another country under an agreement with that country and the UK Government; or
  • to resume a post in a Higher Education Institution, working for the same Sponsor as in a previous grant of entry clearance or leave to remain as a Tier 2 (General) Migrant, where the break in employment is due solely to a period of academic leave.
  • to continue working as a member of an existing research team and:
    • the Sponsor is a Higher Education Institution or a Research Council, and
    • you have previously worked with the lead researcher as part of their team for a continuous 12 month period immediately before the date of the application (or for 12 months during the 24 months immediately before the date of the application, if you have been absent due to the reasons shown in paragraph 234 of the Tier 2 Policy Guidance during that time)
  • connected with the inward investment provisions
  • to do a job for which salary is not less than £159,600 gross per annum
  • to do a job which is in the list of shortage occupations list.

Your sponsor must include full details of the why the exemption applies on the Certificate of Sponsorship.

What is genuine job vacancy requirement for Tier 2 General visa entry clearance application?

When applying for Tier 2 General visa entry clearance, the Entry Clearance Officer (ECO) must be satisfied that you are being sponsored to undertake a genuine vacancy and are capable of undertaking the role for which your Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) was assigned. The Home Office UKVI Guidance states that the requirements of the job must be reasonable and not have been tailored to exclude resident workers from being recruited.

In order to assess the genuineness of job vacancy, the Entry Clearance Officer (ECO) may request additional information and evidence from you or your Tier 2 General sponsor, and refuse your Tier 2 General entry clearance application if the information or evidence is not provided. Any requested documents must be received by the Entry Clearance Officer (ECO) at the address specified in the request within 10 business days of the date of the request.

Issues of genuineness of job vacancy normally arise only after the applicant has been interviewed by the Entry Clearance Officer (ECO) and the applicant has failed to give satisfactory answers to address the concerns of the Entry Clearance Officer (ECO).

FAQs - Switching Into Tier 2 General Visa

Does RLMT exemption apply when switching from start-up visa to Tier 2 General visa?

No, the exemption from Resident Labour Market Test (RLMT) does not apply when switching from start-up visa to Tier 2 General visa from inside the UK.

What is the processing time for switching into Tier 2 General visa?

The processing time for an application for switching into Tier 2 General visa from inside the UK is dependent on the type of service you use for your application.

Standard Service

An application for switching into Tier 2 General visa is normally decided within 8 weeks if you apply using standard service.

Priority Service

If you apply for switching into Tier 2 General visa using Priority Service, you will normally get a decision on your application within 5 working days.

Super Priority Service

If you apply for switching into Tier 2 General visa using Super Priority Service, you will normally get decision on your application within 24 hours.

Can I switch from spouse visa to Tier 2 General visa from inside the UK?

No, you cannot switch from spouse visa to Tier 2 General visa from inside the UK. You will have to leave the UK and apply for Tier 2 General visa entry clearance from your country of nationality.

Can I switch from Tier 2 ICT to Tier 2 General visa from inside the UK?

You can switch from Tier 2 Intra Company Transfer (ICT) to Tier 2 General visa from inside the UK only if you applied for your initial Tier 2 ICT entry clearance under the rules in place before 6 April 2011. A person who applied for initial Tier 2 ICT visa after 6 April 2011 is not eligible to switch into Tier 2 General visa from inside the UK.

Who can switch to Tier 2 General visa from inside the UK?

You can apply for switching into Tier 2 General visa from inside the UK if you have, or were last granted, leave in one of the categories listed below:

  • Tier 1 visa
  • Tier 2 (Sportsperson) visa
  • Tier 2 (Minister of religion) visa
  • Tier 2 (Intra company Transfer) visa under the Immigration Rules in place before 6 April 2010 and you’re applying to change sponsor
  • Tier 4 visa - if you have an eligible qualification, will complete your course in 3 months, or you’ve done at least 12 months of a PhD
  • Start-up visa
  • Innovator visa
  • Tier 4 Dependent Partner
  • Representative of an overseas business

Can Tier 2 ICT Dependant switch to Tier 2 General visa from inside the UK?

No, you cannot switch from Tier 2 ICT Dependant visa to Tier 2 General from inside the UK. You will have to leave the UK and apply for Tier 2 General visa entry clearance from your country of nationality. There will be no cooling-off period for Tier 2 ICT Dependant to apply for Tier 2 General visa entry clearance from outside the UK.

What is the minimum salary for switching from Tier 4 to Tier 2 General visa from inside the UK?

If you are a Tier 4 Graduate switching from Tier 4 to Tier 2 General visa, you can be paid "New Entrant" salary for your Tier 2 job which should be either £20,800 or as specified in the relevant code of practice in Appendix J to the Immigration Rules, whichever is higher.

How can I change from Tier 4 to Tier 2 General from inside the UK?

A Tier 4 Graduate can switch from Tier 4 visa to Tier 2 General visa from inside the UK. You can only switch into Tier 2 General if you meet the following criteria:

  • You are currently, or have last been, sponsored by a Tier 4 sponsor which is either:
    • a higher education provider with a track record of compliance; or
    • an overseas higher education institution, and were sponsored to undertake a short-term study abroad programme in the United Kingdom, and
  • you have
    • completed, or are applying no more than 3 months before the expected completion date for, a course leading to a UK recognised bachelor’s or master’s degree;
    • completed, or are applying no more than 3 months before the expected completion date for a course leading to a Postgraduate Certificate in Education or Professional Graduate Diploma of Education; or
    • completed a minimum of 12 months’ study in the UK towards a UK PhD during your current period of leave or a period of continuous leave which includes your last grant of leave; and
  • you studied for, or are studying, the eligible award at a UK institution that is a UK recognised or listed body, or an education provider which holds a licence for sponsoring students under Tier 4 of the Points-Based System; and
  • your periods of UK study and/or research towards your course ‘have been undertaken whilst you had entry clearance, leave to enter or leave to remain in the UK that was not subject to a restriction preventing you from undertaking it; and
  • if you undertook or are still undertaking, the study for the qualification whilst holding leave as a Tier 4 student, you have undertaken the study at the institution which is the Tier 4 sponsor, and not through supplementary study; and
  • you are applying from inside the UK.

You must provide a degree certificate, academic transcript or an academic reference on official headed paper of the institution. You may have been sponsored in your studies by Her Majesty’s Government, your home government or any international scholarship agency. If you have had such sponsorship within the past 12 months, you must provide Home Office UKVI with the Government or international scholarship agency’s unconditional consent in writing, giving you their permission to remain in, or re-enter, the UK.

The Tier 2 sponsor is exempt from meeting the Resident Labour Market Test (RLMT) if the applicant meets the above referred switching criteria. The employer needs to issue an unrestricted Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) which the applicant will use to make an application for switching into Tier 2 General leave. The applicant's job and salary level should comply with the requirements of the Code of Practice in Appendix J to the Immigration Rules.

Can I switch from Tier 4 Dependant Partner visa to Tier 2 General visa from inside the UK?

Yes, you can switch from Tier 4 Dependant partner visa to Tier 2 General visa from inside the UK. Your Tier 2 sponsor should assign a restricted Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) for you to apply for switching from Tier 4 Dependant Partner vsia to Tier 2 General visa.

How can I apply for switching into Tier 2 General visa from inside the UK?

You can apply online for switching into Tier 2 General visa from inside the UK. You can only submit your online application after your Tier 2 sponsor has assigned you a valid Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS). Upon submission of the online application, you have to pay the Home Office UKVI fees online, book the appointment online with the UKVCAS application centre for enrolment of biometrics, upload all the documents online and attend the biometrics centre for enrolment of biometrics.

What is the job skill level required for switching into Tier 2 General visa?

For switching into Tier 2 General visa from inside the UK, the Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) assigned by your prospective employer must confirm that:

What is Shortage Occupations List (SOL) for switching into Tier 2 General visa?

The shortage occupation list is an official list of occupations as given in Appendix K of the Immigration Rules for which there are not enough resident workers to fill job vacancies. The shortage occupation lists are recommended by the Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) and are revised periodically.

You will be awarded 30 points if your job was on a shortage occupation list at the time your Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) was assigned by your Tier 2 General sponsor.

There is one list for the whole of the UK and a further additional list for Scotland. If you want to be awarded points for a job on the shortage occupation list in Scotland, you must be undertaking that job in Scotland.

You should confirm with your Tier 2 General sponsor that they have indicated that your job is a shortage occupation in the relevant field on the Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS). You should also confirm with your Tier 2 General sponsor that the SOC code and job description on the Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) show that the job is one of those included on the shortage occupation list.

In general, if a role is on the shortage occupation list, your sponsor is not required to advertise the position.

Can I apply for switching into Tier 2 General visa as a New Entrant?

According to Appendix J to the Immigration Rules, New Entrant” rate will only apply if:

 the applicant:

  • is applying as a Tier 2 (General) Migrant and scores points from the Post-Study Work provisions of Appendix A,
  • is applying as a Tier 2 (General) Migrant and scores points from the Resident Labour Market Test provisions of Appendix A, on the basis that his Sponsor has carried out a university milkround,
  • is applying as a Tier 2 (Intra-Company Transfer) Migrant in the Graduate Trainee sub-category,

OR

  • was under the age of 26 on the date the application was made; and
  • the applicant is applying for entry clearance or leave to remain (not for indefinite leave to remain); and
  • the applicant is not applying for a grant of leave that would extend his total stay in Tier 2 and/or as a Work Permit Holder beyond 3 years and 1 month.

What if my prospective employer does not have the Tier 2 General sponsor licence to sponsor me for switching into Tier 2 General visa?

If your prospective employer does not have the Tier 2 General sponsor licence to sponsor you for switching into Tier 2 General visa, our expert team of sponsor licence solicitors can help your prospective employer to apply for Tier 2 General sponsor licence so that your employer is able to sponsor you for switching into Tier 2 General visa.

What is the minimum salary requirement for switching into Tier 2 General visa?

The salary to be paid to a Tier 2 General Migrant should not be less than the minimum salary threshold as set out in Table 11CA in paragraph 79A to Appendix A of the Immigration Rules. The minimum salary threshold for Tier 2 General visa is as given in the table below:

Circumstances Minimum Salary
None of the exceptions below apply. £30,000 per year or the appropriate rate for the job as stated in Appendix J, whichever is higher

The applicant is considered to be a “New Entrant”.

£20,800 per year or the appropriate rate for the job as stated in Appendix J, whichever is higher

The job is one of the following public service occupations:

  • 2217 Medical radiographers
  • 2231 Nurses
  • 2314 Secondary education teaching professionals – subject teachers in maths, physics, chemistry, computer science and Mandarin only
  • 3213 Paramedics.
£20,800 per year or the appropriate rate for the job as stated in Appendix J, whichever is higher
The occupation is either 2231 Nurses or 2232 Midwives and meets the requirements of paragraph 77K for applicants undertaking the Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE) to obtain Nursing and Midwifery Council registration. At least the appropriate rate for a Band 3 and equivalent nurse or midwife, as stated in Table 9 of Appendix J until registration with the Nursing and Midwifery Council Registration is either successfully completed, otherwise closed, or after 8 months of the stated employment date, whichever is earlier.

What is a Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) for switching into Tier 2 General visa?

A certificate of sponsorship (CoS) holds your personal details and information about the job you’ve been offered. It’s an electronic record, not a paper document. Your sponsor will give you a certificate of sponsorship (CoS) reference number to add to your Tier 2 General visa application.

You can only use your certificate of sponsorship (CoS) reference number once. You must use your Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) within 3 months of the date it is assigned to you.

How can I find a list of licenced Tier 2 General sponsors?

The Home Office UKVI maintains a list of licenced Tier 2 General sponsors. The list of Tier 2 sponsors is also known as register of Tier 2 sponsors.

Can I switch into Tier 2 General visa as an uregistered nurse or midwife?

If you are applying for switching into Tier 2 General worker visa to work in the UK as a nurse or midwife and are not yet registered with the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC), you must have passed the NMC’s Computer Based Test (CBT) or your application for switching into Tier 2 General visa will be refused. You must provide evidence from the NMC to demonstrate this.

Furthermore, your Tier 2 General sponsor must also confirm that you will sit an Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE) within 3 months of your stated employment start date.

If you need to pass your OSCE, your Tier 2 General sponsor must tell the Home Office UKVI within 10 working days:

  • If you fail your OSCE but arrange a re-sit and they still want to sponsor you if you pass. They must tell the Home Office UKVI the date of your re-sit.
  • If you re-sit your OSCE and fail for the second time, they must tell the Home Office UKVI. They must also stop sponsoring you if you do not obtain full NMC registration within 8 months of the start date on your Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS). If you have moved sponsors but were previously granted Tier 2 General leave as a nurse or midwife, the 8 months will start from the start date of your previous employment.
  • If you pass your OSCE, they must tell Home Office UKVI the date you will start working for them as a registered nurse or midwife.
  • If they decide at any point that they no longer wish to sponsor you. For example, if you fail your first OSCE and they do not want to wait until you have done a re-sit.

You are able to make 3 attempts to pass the OSCE. If you fail your first attempt at OSCE, you can re-sit it after ten days. If you fail it a second time, you will have the opportunity to sit for a third time, waiting 3 months to allow for further preparation. If you fail for a third time, you will be unable to re-sit the OSCE until 6 months have passed since your previous unsuccessful test and will have to re-apply to the NMC.

If you are already in the UK with entry clearance or leave to remain and your sponsor stops sponsoring you, Home Office UKVI will reduce (curtail) your leave.

For how long will I be granted leave to remain as a result of successful application for switching into Tier 2 General visa?

You will be granted Tier 2 General leave according to the start date and end date of your job as given in your Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS). The maximum period for which your employer can sponsor you for your Tier 2 Geneal visa is 5 years. You can extend your Tier 2 General visa further for one more year after 5 years which means the maximum time a person can spend in the UK under Tier 2 General visa category is 6 years in total.

Normally, most applicants are able to apply for ILR as Tier 2 General Migrants 28 days before completion of 5 years in the UK with leave to remain as Tier 2 General Migrant.

When does an exemption from the Resident Labour Market Test (RLMT) apply for switching into Tier 2 General visa?

The Resident Labour Market Test does not apply if the job offer is:

  • in a supernumerary research position where you have been issued a non-transferrable scientific research Award or Fellowship either:
    • by a third party organisation, and the Award or Fellowship cannot be transferred to anyone else; or
    • by your Sponsor if the following requirements are met:
      • you have been selected through a competitive process on the basis of your own research proposal; and
      • the funding of the research is secured in an agreement between your Sponsor and a third party organisation, which includes objectively justified requirements that effectively prohibit any settled worker from undertaking the role.

This exemption continues to apply after the relevant third party funding has ended, as long as you are being sponsored to continue to undertake the same research; or

  • to continue working as a Doctor or Dentist in training, under the same NHS Training Number which was assigned to you for previous lawful employment as a Doctor or Dentist in Training in the UK, including where you are applying to return to your training after an out of programme experience; or
  • as a Doctor in Speciality Training and your salary and the costs of your training are being met by the government of another country under an agreement with that country and the UK Government; or
  • to resume a post in a Higher Education Institution, working for the same Sponsor as in a previous grant of entry clearance or leave to remain as a Tier 2 (General) Migrant, where the break in employment is due solely to a period of academic leave.
  • to continue working as a member of an existing research team and:
    • the Sponsor is a Higher Education Institution or a Research Council, and
    • you have previously worked with the lead researcher as part of their team for a continuous 12 month period immediately before the date of the application (or for 12 months during the 24 months immediately before the date of the application, if you have been absent due to the reasons shown in paragraph 234 of the Tier 2 Policy Guidance during that time)
  • connected with the inward investment provisions
  • to do a job for which salary is not less than £159,600 gross per annum
  • to do a job which is in the list of shortage occupations list.

Your sponsor must include full details of the why the exemption applies on the Certificate of Sponsorship.

FAQs - Tier 2 General Visa Extension

How early can I apply for Tier 2 General visa extension?

You can normally apply for extension of your Tier 2 General visa 28 days before the expiry of your current Tier 2 General visa. Exceptionally, you can also apply for Tier 2 General visa renewal up to 3 months before the expiry of your current Tier 2 General visa.

In case of change of employment, you can apply for Tier 2 General visa extension at any time during the validity of your current Tier 2 General visa but within 3 months of the date your CoS has been assigned to you by your new Tier 2 sponsor.

How many times can I extend my Tier 2 General visa?

There is no limit on the number of times you can apply for extension of your Tier 2 General visa. You can extend your Tier 2 General visa either before it expires or when you change Tier 2 sponsor (change of employment application). There is no limit on number of times you can change your Tier 2 sponsor. However, you cannot be in the UK for more than 6 years in total under Tier 2 General visa category.

It is very common for applicants to apply for initial Tier 2 General visa for either 5 years in one go or initial application for 3 years followed by an extension for 2 or 3 years.

Can I apply for Tier 2 General visa renewal after the expiry of my current Tier 2 General visa?

By virtue of paragraph 39E of the Immigration Rules, an applicant can apply for Tier 2 General visa extension within 14 days of the expiry of his Tier 2 General leave or within 14 days of Section 3C leave expiring. The applicant must give good reasons as to why he could not apply for extension before the expiry of his Tier 2 General leave.

Can I re-apply for Tier 2 General extension if my application for Tier 2 General visa renewal has been refused by the Home Office UKVI?

Subject to meeting the requirements of paragraph 39E of the Immigration Rules, you can re-apply for Tier 2 General visa extension within 14 days of the refusal of your Tier 2 General extension application or within 14 days of the Administrative Review (AR) refusal decision of your Tier 2 General visa extension application.

How can I apply for Tier 2 General visa extension?

An application for Tier 2 General visa extension is made online. You will need a valid Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) assigned to you by your Tier 2 sponsor for you to be able to complete and submit your online Tier 2 General extension application.

Once the Tier 2 General extension application has been completed and submitted online, you can pay the Home Office UKVI fee for Tier 2 General visa extenson online and book the biometrics appointment online with the UKVCAS biometrics centre. You must upload all your supporting documents online before you attend the UKVCAS biometrics centre.

What is the processing time of Tier 2 General visa extension application?

The processing time of Tier 2 General visa extension application depends on the type of service you use to submit your Tier 2 General visa extension application. The service standards for Tier 2 General visa extension application processing are as follows:

Standard Service

A Tier 2 General extension application submitted through standard service is normally decided within 8 weeks.

Priority Service

A Tier 2 General extension application submitted through priority service is normally decided within 5 working days.

Super Priority Service

A Tier 2 General extension application submitted through super priority service is normally decided within 24 hours.

Can I start working for my new employer before my application for Tier 2 General visa based on change of employment is approved by the Home Office?

It is recommended that you do not start work for your sponsor until you have received your biometric residence permit (BRP). However, on the basis of your approval letter, if you and your sponsor agree you can start work before you have your BRP, both you and your sponsor carry the risk of having no statutory excuse against a civil penalty if the BRP card is incorrect or withdrawn by the Home Office UKVI. You can continue working for your previous sponsor until the start date on your new Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS), provided your previous leave has not expired.

Can I apply for Tier 2 General extension application from outside the UK?

You cannot apply for an extension if you are applying from outside the UK.

Is Resident Labour Market Test (RLMT) required if I am continuing my job with the same employer under the same job role?

A Resident Labour Market Test (RLMT) is not required for extension applications if you are continuing with the same Tier 2 sponsor under the same job role.

Can I continue working for my current sponsor while my application for Tier 2 General extension is pending with the Home Office UKVI?

You can continue working while we are considering your extension application, provided you submitted the application before your previous leave expired.

What is the job skill level required for extension of Tier 2 General visa?

For extension of Tier 2 General visa, the Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) assigned by your Tier 2 General sponsor must confirm that:

What is Shortage Occupations List (SOL) for extension of Tier 2 General visa?

The shortage occupation list is an official list of occupations as given in Appendix K of the Immigration Rules for which there are not enough resident workers to fill job vacancies. The shortage occupation lists are recommended by the Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) and are revised periodically.

You will be awarded 30 points if your job was on a shortage occupation list at the time your Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) was assigned by your Tier 2 General sponsor.

There is one list for the whole of the UK and a further additional list for Scotland. If you want to be awarded points for a job on the shortage occupation list in Scotland, you must be undertaking that job in Scotland.

You should confirm with your Tier 2 General sponsor that they have indicated that your job is a shortage occupation in the relevant field on the Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS). You should also confirm with your Tier 2 General sponsor that the SOC code and job description on the Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) show that the job is one of those included on the shortage occupation list.

In general, if a role is on the shortage occupation list, your sponsor is not required to advertise the position.

What if I am changing employer but my prospective employer does not have the Tier 2 General sponsor licence to sponsor me for extension of my Tier 2 General visa?

If you are changing employment and your new prospective employer does not have the Tier 2 General sponsor licence to sponsor you for extension of your Tier 2 General visa, our expert team of sponsor licence solicitors can help your new employer to apply for Tier 2 General sponsor licence so that your employer is able to sponsor you for change of employment and extension of your Tier 2 General visa.

For how long will I be granted leave to remain as a result of successful application for Tier 2 General visa extension?

You can apply to extend your Tier 2 General visa for up to another 5 years, as long as your total stay under Tier 2 General visa category is not more than 6 years.

FAQs - ILR Tier 2 General

How can I apply for ILR as a Tier 2 General Migrant?

You can apply for ILR as a Tier 2 General Migrant by completing application form SET (O) online.

When can I apply for ILR as a Tier 2 General Migrant?

You can apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) as a Tier 2 General migrant after you have been resident in the UK for 5 years with leave to remain as a Tier 2 General or in combination with other permitted work visa categories.

Can I apply for ILR as a Tier 2 General 28 days before completing 5 years?

Yes, according to Home Office UKVI Guidance on Tier 2 General visa category, you can apply for ILR as Tier 2 General 28 days before completing the 5 years qualifying period.

When does my 5 years qualifying period for ILR as a Tier 2 General start?

Your qualifying period can include time from the date your initial application (for entry clearance or leave to remain) was approved. You can include the time between your entry clearance being granted and you entering the United Kingdom as part of your continuous period. Absences between the date entry clearance is granted and the date you enter the United Kingdom are treated as an absence from the United Kingdom and will form part of the 180 days allowed within a continuous 12-month period. You do not need to provide evidence to demonstrate a period of absence between obtaining entry clearance and entering the United Kingdom.

Can I apply for ILR as a Tier 2 General Migrant if my Tier 2 sponsor's licence is revoked?

You cannot successfully apply for ILR as a Tier 2 General Migrant if your sponsor's Tier 2 General sponsor licence is revoked before your ILR application. In such circumstances, you should make a Tier 2 General exetension application based on change of employment by seeking sponsorship for your Tier 2 leave through a different Tier 2 sponsor.

Do I need a Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) assigned by my Tier 2 General sponsor for me to apply for ILR as a Tier 2 General?

No, your Tier 2 sponsor does not need to assign you a certificate of sponsorship (CoS) for you to apply for ILR as a Tier 2 General Migrant. However, you will need a letter from your Tier 2 sponsor to support your application for ILR as a Tier 2 General Migrant. As your legal representtive, we can provide you the required template of the letter from your employer as per Home Office UKVI requirements.

What are the eligibility requirements for ILR as a Tier 2 General Migrant?

You can apply for ILR as a Tier 2 General Migrant if:

  • you have a Tier 2 (General) visa
  • you’ve been living and working in the UK for 5 years and spent no more than 180 days outside the UK in any 12 months (‘continuous residence’)
  • your employer (sponsor) still needs you for your job - they’ll need to provide a document confirming this
  • your job pays £35,800 or more (unless you’re exempt from the ‘minimum earnings threshold’)
  • you get paid the relevant salary listed in the Codes of Practice (Appendix J)

You should also:

Can I combine time spent on other visa categories with Tier 2 General to apply for ILR as a Tier 2 General Migrant?

Yes, you can combine time spent on certain other visa categories with Tier 2 General leave in order to complete 5 years qualifying period for ILR.

The applicant must have spent a continuous period of 5 years lawfully in the UK, of which the most recent period must have been spent with leave as a Tier 2 (General) Migrant in any combination of the following categories:

  • as a Tier 1 Migrant, other than a Tier 1 (Post Study Work) Migrant or a Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur) Migrant,
  • as a Tier 2 (General) Migrant, a Tier 2 (Minister of Religion) Migrant or a Tier 2 (Sportsperson) Migrant,
  • as a Tier 2 (Intra-Company Transfer) Migrant, provided the continuous period of 5 years spent lawfully in the UK includes a period of leave as:
    • a Tier 2 (Intra-Company Transfer) Migrant granted under the Rules in place before 6 April 2010, or
    • a Work Permit Holder, provided that the work permit was granted because the applicant was the subject of an Intra-Company Transfer,
  • as a Representative of an Overseas Business,
  • as a Highly Skilled Migrant,
  • as a Work Permit Holder, or
  • as an Innovator, or
  • as a Global Talent migrant.

What is the salary requirement for ILR Tier 2 General?

To apply for ILR as a Tier 2 General Migrant, you must be earning at least the appropriate rate for the job, as stated in the Codes of Practice in Appendix J OR a gross annual salary of at least the minimum earnings threshold, whichever is the higher. The minimum earnings threshold is £35,800 gross per annum, if you apply for ILR as a Tier 2 General on or after 6 April 2019.

Exemption From Minimum Salary Requirement

You do not have to earn £35,800 if the main job you’re sponsored for:

Appendix K provides a list of all posts that have been listed as in shortage since 6 April 2015. You can confirm whether any of your previous Certificates of Sponsorship were issued for a shortage occupation by checking your previous applications or by speaking to your current and/or previous employer.

How many days can you stay outside the UK to apply for ILR as a Tier 2 General Migrant?

You cannot have had more than 180 days’ absence from the United Kingdom during any consecutive 12 month period within the 5 year period. You will need to list details of your absences from the United Kingdom, including the reasons for those absences, on your application form for ILR as a Tier 2 General Migrant. You can include the time between your entry clearance being granted and you entering the United Kingdom as part of your continuous period. Absences between the date entry clearance is granted and the date you enter the United Kingdom are treated as an absence from the United Kingdom and will form part of the 180 days allowed within a continuous 12-month period. You do not need to provide evidence to demonstrate a period of absence between obtaining entry clearance and entering the United Kingdom.

For Tier 2 General ILR applications made after 11 January 2018, Home Office would consider absences from the UK on a rolling basis, rather than in separate consecutive 12-month periods. If your qualifying period includes leave granted before this date, any absences during that leave will be considered under the previous rules – in separate 12-month periods, ending on the same date as you make your ILR Tie 2 General application.

For example, you apply for ILR as Tier 2 General on 30 June 2020. Your continuous period includes the following grants of leave:

  • One grant of leave from 1 July 2015 to 28 July 2018 – Any absences during this grant of leave will be considered in separate 12 month periods, ending on 30 June each year.
  • One grant of leave from 29 July 2018 to 30 June 2020 – Any absences during this grant of leave will be considered on a rolling basis. Home Office UKVI will not include any absences from the previous grant of leave when they assess this.

What evidence should I provide for any absences which are work related or in line with annual paid leave?

If any of your absences are in connection with employment or in line with annual paid leave you will need to provide a letter from the relevant employer detailing the purpose and period of absences, including periods of annual paid leave.

You will need to provide this information for the full 5 year continuous period. Therefore, if you are moving employers and are considering applying for settlement in the future, you may wish to request a letter detailing your absences before you move to your new post. If you are unable to obtain a letter as specified in the Immigration Rules, because your previous employer has ceased to exist for example, you should confirm this in writing when you make your application. The caseworker who considers your application will assess this on a case by case basis.

What evidence should I provide for any absences which are due to serious or compelling reasons?

If any of your absences are due to a serious or compelling reasons, you must provide a personal letter which includes full details of the reason(s) for the absences and all relevant supporting documents in relation to those reasons - e.g. medical certificates, birth/death certificates, other information about the reasons which led to the absence from the United Kingdom.

Whatever the reason for absences from the United Kingdom, they will still be counted towards the maximum 180 days unless they fall under a specific exemption. This includes any absences for work reasons, or serious and compelling reasons.

Which absences are exempt from consideration as part of the maximum 180 days?

There are two exemptions where absences are not considered as part of the maximum 180 days:

  • where you have been absent from the United Kingdom assisting with a national or international humanitarian or environmental crisis, or
  • where you are working in a PhD level occupation and you have been absent from the UK because you are undertaking overseas research.

What is the processing time of Tier 2 General ILR application?

The processing time of ILR Tier 2 General application depends on the type of service you use to submit your ILR Tier 2 General application. The service standards for ILR Tier 2 General application processing are as follows:

Standard Service

ILR Tier 2 General application submitted through standard service is normally decided within 8 weeks.

Priority Service

ILR Tier 2 General application submitted through priority service is normally decided within 5 working days.

Super Priority Service

ILR Tier 2 General application submitted through super priority service is normally decided within 24 hours.

Can I apply for ILR Tier 2 General from outisde the UK?

No, you can only apply for ILR as Tier 2 General Migrant from inside the UK.

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