Senior or Specialist Worker Visa

The Global Business Mobility route that came into effect on 11 April 2022 changes the way overseas firms can establish a UK footprint or transfer staff to the UK. One of these five pathways is through a Senior or Specialist worker visa. This visa allows one to come into the country and work at their employer’s UK Branch. This visa has replaced the Intra-company Transfer visa, previously the Tier 2 (Intra-company Transfer) Long-term Staff visa. You are able to use your Intra-company Transfer certificate of sponsorship to apply for a Senior or Specialist Worker visa, unless it says that you will be paid less than £42,400 per year.

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To be eligible for this visa, you must meet the criteria given below:

  • Be an existing employee of an organisation that’s been approved by the Home Office as a sponsor
  • Have a ‘certificate of sponsorship’ from your employer with information about the work you will do in the UK (this would be an electronic form, not a paperback document)
  • Do a job that’s on the list of eligible occupations
  • Be paid at least £42,400 per year

Additionally, you will need to have worked with your employer outside of the UK prior to applying for this visa. If you are earning less than £73,900 per annum, you must have been working for your employer for a minimum of 12 months outside of the UK. However, if you are earning above £73,900, no minimum time is needed to have worked with your employer.

There is a list of occupations that you can check to see if your job is eligible to apply for this visa.

How much does it cost?

There are two fees that need to be paid upon finishing your application – the application fee and the healthcare surcharge.

The application fee is dependent on where you are applying from and how long you intend to stay in the UK. If you are applying from outside of the UK:

  • up to 3 years – £625 per person
  • more than 3 years – £1,235 per person

However, if you are already in the UK or on an Intra-company Transfer visa:

  • up to 3 years – £719 per person
  • more than 3 years – £1,423

With this, you would usually have to pay the healthcare surcharge which is an additional £624 per year. The UK government will also need to see a minimum of £1270 in your bank account to show that you can support yourself while you are here.

What documents are needed?

When applying, you will need to provide:

  • A valid passport
  • Your certificate of sponsorship by your employer
  • Job title and annual salary
  • Job occupation code
  • The name of your employer and their sponsor licence number
  • Evidence that you have enough personal savings to support yourself in the UK, for example, bank statements
  • Proof of your relationship with your partner or children if they’re applying with you
  • Evidence that you’ve worked with your employer outside of the UK (if you’re earning less than £73,900)

What you can and cannot do with the visa

With the Senior/Specialist Worker visa, you are able to:

  • Work in the UK under the sponsorship of your employer
  • Bring your partner and children with you if they are eligible
  • Travel abroad and return to the UK

You are unable to:

  • Apply for most benefits that are publicly funded
  • Change jobs unless you are updating your visa
  • Have a second job
  • Apply to permanently settle in the UK


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Partner and children

Your spouse and your children can apply to stay in the UK with you as ‘dependents’ if they are eligible. Your partner can be considered eligible if you/they can provide proof of the following:

  • You are in a civil partnership or marriage that is recognised by the UK
  • You have been living with your partner for the last 2 years

As for your children, they must:

  • Live with you
  • Not be married or have any children
  • Be financially dependent on you

Evidence must be provided for the above criteria in the form of:

  • A bank statement
  • Credit card bills
  • Driving licence
  • NHS registration document
  • An official letter from their university or college

Additionally, you must also hold a certain amount of money in order to prove that you and your family will be able to support themselves. The criteria for this are as follows:

  • £285 for your partner
  • £315 for one child
  • £200 for each additional child

Proof that you will be able to support this monthly will need to also be provided.

What can NA Law do to help?

We at NA law are dedicated to making the application process swift and painless. From questions you may have regarding documentation, to you finally working in the UK legally, we are here to help. For any further questions please contact NA law.

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