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With the end of free movement for EU/EEA/Swiss nationals from 1 January 2021, the UK's new immigration system will apply equally to new arrivals of EU/EEA/Swiss nationals as it will to new and existing non-EU nationals who require a visa. 

As part of this, on 1 December 2020, the Tier 2 (General) visa route was closed and replaced with the ‘Skilled Worker Visa’ route.

No further applications for Tier 2 visas can be made from 1 December 2020, but exisiting Tier 2 visa holders will retain their current visas with no change to their conditions, and at the point of extension will apply for a Skilled Worker Visa under the rules of this visa route.

Points Requirements

To qualify for a Skilled Worker Visa, the individual must score a minimum of 70 points from the following attributes:

Offer of a job by an approved sponsor

20 points

Job offer at an appropriate skill level (RQF level 3 and above) supported by a Certificate of Sponsorship

20 points

English language at level B1 

10 points

Minimum Salary requirements met       

20 points

Other Visa Requirements

Over and above the requirement to 'score' 70 points, as above, the are other requirements that the indivdual must meet as part of the Skilled Worker Visa application process

- Finance/Maintenance 

For Skilled Worker Visa applicants, the department can certify that, should it become necessary, you will maintain and accommodate them and their dependents until the end of their first month of employment.

If you do not wish to certify the ‘Financial Requirement’, then for visa purposes the individual and all of their dependants must meet these requirements, as follows - 

  • The following minimum funds must be held, and evidenced, by the applicant in a bank/savings account for at least 28 days:
    • Main applicant - funds of £1,270
    • Spouse/Partner - funds of £285
    • First child - funds of £315
    • Each additional child - funds of £200

- ATAS requirements

From 21 May 2021, relevant international researchers applying for a Skilled Worker Visa must have obtained an Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS) certificate as part of their visa application. The ATAS requirement only applies to certain nationalities, and in certain roles and research fields.

As part of the ATAS application process, the individual will be required to submit information about your programme of study/research including the relevant CAH3 code. This can be obtained via your recruiting department/institution, via an HR form (available w/c 17th May)

For further guidance on the ATAS scheme and making an application, please see the guidance here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/academic-technology-approval-scheme#academic...

- 'Genuine Vacancy' requirements

Whilst the Resident Labour Market Test (RLMT), which existed under the Tier 2 route, has now been abolished, there remains a requirement for us to prove that any given sponsored role is a genuine vacancy. To meet this requirement, the HR Compliance Team uses RAS to monitor and assess the 'record of the text of advert' for any given role.

As part of this requirement, please ensure the following is met so as to avoid issues where sponsorship is required:

  • Where under-appointing to a Research Assistant role, please ensure that the advert clearly sets out the terms for under-appointment e.g. where the individual does not yet hold a PhD, they would be be appointed as Research Assistant in the first instance.
  • Where a role states that any given qualification is required, a copy of that qualifcation must be provided as part of a sponsorship application (i.e. the Certificate of Sponorship)

 

Applying for a Skilled Worker Visa

The University provides an FAQ to all Skilled Worker Visa CoS recipients regarding the processes and procedures to obtain a visa. These are provided by e-mail to the applicant alongside the CoS, and are replicated below for ease of reference:

  • For those applying from inside the UK, it is essential that they apply for their new visa before their existing visa expires. Failure to do so will jeopordise their ability to start work/continue working for the University.

 

Skilled Worker Visa conditions

  • The individual will not be allowed access to state benefits or other public funds. See the UKVI website for full definitions.
  • Registration with the police (only required if they are a national of these countries and they will be resident in the UK for more than 6 months).
  • The only work that they can do is:
    • The job described in the Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS), working for the designated sponsor; and
    • Supplementary employment in the same professsion and at the same professional level, outside their normal working hours or in a job on the shortage occupation list, for up to 20 hours per week; and
    • Voluntary work.

 

Family members

Individuals applying for a Skilled Worker Visa can also apply for visas for their dependants. See the section on dependant visas for further guidance.