General Tier 2-Skilled Migrants
Tier 2 of the Points Based System is similar to the UK Work Permit Scheme whereby a job offer is required in order to submit a successful application. Tier 2 is intended to cater to people with qualifications or important work-related experience within a wide range of sectors from health service workers to white collar jobs and the trades.
Tier 2 applicants will require to obtain a certificate of sponsorship, in this case from the sponsoring company, as part of your application. Like the existing UK work permit visa system, Tier 2 visa applications are employer led and the sponsoring employer will need to satisfy certain responsibilities.
The Tier 2 visa service also has shares some common elements with the Tier 1 level and the outgoing HSMP in that there will be a minimum points threshold that must be met. To qualify for a Tier 2 certificate of sponsorship you will be required to score 50 points on a skills assessment and you must also prove that you are proficient in the English language. Examples of sectors that will fall into the tier 2 category at present include teaching and nursing.
Like Tier 1, a successful Tier 2 application offers a potential route for permanent settlement in the United Kingdom. As with the current system of UK work permits , after five years in the UK you may become eligible to apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) or permanent residence. Following this, provided you meet the requirements for British Naturalisation, you may be able to naturalise as a British citizen.
The information below gives an overview of how the Tier 2 points criteria is likely to function:
- NVQ3 = 5 points
- Bachelors Degree = 10 points
- Masters Degree = 10 points
- PhD = 15 points
- £15,000 - £18,000 = 5 points
- £18,000 - £19,500 = 10 points
- £19,500 - £21,000 = 15 points
- More than £21,000 = 20 points
Job offers for positions identified as being in shortage sectors by the Mgration Advisory Committee (MAC) are worth 50 points. Intra-Company Transfer candidates [see below] will automatically receive 50 points. Non-shortage positions which pass the Resident Labour Market Test are worth 30 points.
In addition to the points system outlined above, you will also be required to show that you are proficient in the English Language.
Employers recruiting candidates through the Tier 2 work permit system must provide a sponsorship certificate detailing the job title and demonstrating that the salary offered is appropriate for such a position and that the role is at or above NVQ3. The certificate acts as confirmation that the candidate has the necessary skills and the intention to fill the specified position.
Where a position being offered is not a shortage occupation the employer must illustrate that they have attempted to fill the role from the domestic workforce through appropriate advertising, without success.
In circumstances where a candidate wishes to change employment, a new certificate of sponsorship will be required and a re-assessment against the points system need to take place. Like the existing working permit service, a UKvisa application under the tier two does not grant permission to live and work in the United Kingdomas such, and a new certificate will be required for each change of employment.
The UK based employers need to send a duly completed work permit application to the Home Office Work Permits (UK) along with all or most of the following documents:
• Fees (Check if fee is exempted)
• Annual report;
• Certificate of Employers Liability;
• Lease of premises and floor plan;
• Copies of registration documents (for example with the Local Health Authority);
• Utility bills;
• VAT returns;
• P35 - Employers Annual Return to the Inland Revenue
• Accounts submitted to the Inland Revenue; and
• NESI 8 - document from the Inland Revenue.
• Menus, Wine list (In case of hotel and catering establishments)
• Prospectus (In the case of the Education Sector)
• Hierarchy charts
• Proof of placement of a suitable Advertisement (If it is a Tier 2 Application)
• All the academic and work experience documents of the applicant
This is not an exhaustive list and the UK Border Agency may need to ask for further information. In addition to the above the employer will need to show that they have undertaken a recruitment search in the EU.
Duration of Visa
The maximum period is five years. The applicants are normally issued a visa for the duration of the work permit; however the migrant can always apply for an extension of visa while remaining within the UK, if it is not the case.
Right of Appeal
If the British Diplomatic Post refuses the entry clearance application of a Tier 2 visat holder, the applicant has a right of appeal that need to be lodged within 28 days of the receipt of refusal letter. The Entry Clearance Manager normally reviews the decision in the light of the grounds of appeal and may overturn the decision and decide to issue the visa. If the decision is not overturned in the review then the case is sent to the Asylum & Immigration Tribunal in the UK for a full Court Hearing.
Change of employment
A migrant can always change his employment, and his new employer needs to apply for a fresh certificate of sponsorship and fulfil all the requirements of such an application. There might not be any need of looking for a suitable resident worker if the applicant is moving to the same Job title having similar duties and responsibilities.
Spouse / Children
Migrants under Tier 2 can invite their spouse / children to join them as their dependants during the time of their employment provided they could support their families without recourse to public funds. The spouse of a migrant will be allowed to work / engage himself in business.
Migrants can switch provided they satisy the requirements under Tier 2.
Migrants who have remained in the UK for 5 years can apply for an Indefinite leave to remain in the UK provided they have continuously met all the requirements of the certificate during the 5 years of employment.