Tier 2 Skilled Workers Scheme

See http://www.ukvisas.gov.uk/en/howtoapply/infs/inf26pbsskilledworker

The skilled worker category is for people coming to the United Kingdom with a job offer to fill a gap in the workforce that cannot be filled by a settled worker. This replaces the old ‘work permit’ process and applies to permanent work, not locums as the work is specific to one employer.

**This category also covers applicants coming to fill shortage occupations – the current shortage occupations list can be viewed at
http://www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk/sitecontent/newsarticles/migrantworkers – it’s worth noting that currently Veterinary Surgeons are included on this list.

Before you apply under the skilled worker category, you must have:

  • a sponsor /licensed UK Employer
  • a valid certificate of sponsorship.

When you apply, you are awarded points based on your:

  • Qualifications;
  • Future expected earnings;
  • Sponsorship;
  • English language skills; and
  • Available maintenance (funds).

How long can you stay for?
If you are given permission to stay as a skilled worker, you will be able to live and work in the United Kingdom for a maximum time of three years plus one month, or the time given in your certificate of sponsorship plus one month, which ever time is shorter.

At the end of the three years, you will need to apply to extend your stay as a skilled worker if you want to stay for a further period. If you are given permission to extend your stay in the United Kingdom as a skilled worker, this is a further two years.