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Individuals sponsored under Tier 2/Skilled Worker Visa and Tier 5 GAE/Temporary Worker GAE visas are allowed, in limited circumstances, to undertake other work in addition to that for which their Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) was assigned. This is called 'supplementary employment'.


Note: Staff occupying Research Assistant/Associates roles at the University of Cambridge are permitted to undertake limited supervisions/demonstrations as part of their core duties, provided their job description includes the requirement to undertake "limited supervision/instruction to classes". Where this is the case, under sponsorship rules, it is permitted for researchers holding a Tier 2 or Skilled Worker Visa to undertake these activities and receive overtime payments for this work.

Any other work, including that undertaken outwith of the individual's core duties, must be classed as supplementary employment and therefore must be undertaken in line with the following rules:

Supplementary employment conditions

  • Supplementary employment can be undertaken with any employer and they do not have to be a licensed sponsor.
  • The sponsored individual does not have to inform UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) that they are undertaking supplementary employment.
  • The employer is not obliged to undertake any reporting or record keeping duties whilst the sponsored individual is completing supplementary employment.
  • The sponsored individual must remain employed by their current sponsor.

However, supplementary employment must:

  • Be either:
    • A job on the Shortage Occupation List; or
    • A job in the same profession and at the same professional level as the work for which the Certificate of Sponsorship was assigned. And,
  • Be for no more than 20 hours per week; and
  • Be conducted outside of the normal working hours for which the Certificate of Sponsorship was assigned.

Prior to a sponsored individual undertaking supplementary employment at the University of Cambridge, if they are not a current employee of the University, a right to work check must be taken.

For further guidance on supplementary employment, please contact the Compliance Team.