UK Sponsored Visa Procedures and Application Process
If you are planning on working in the United Kingdom and you are not a British citizen or a citizen of the European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland, then you will need to obtain a work visa. The UK Sponsored visa is among the visa categories which individuals working for a UK employer may apply for.
In this article, we will discuss UK Sponsored Visa Procedures and Application Process, as well as FAQs to help you get a better understanding of the visa application process.
Before you can apply for a UK Sponsored Visa, you need to be sponsored by an employer that holds a valid sponsor licence. Employers in the UK can apply for a sponsor licence through the UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI). Once the employer has obtained the sponsor licence, the migrant worker can then apply for the UK Sponsored Visa.
There are different types of UK Sponsored Visa categories depending on the job offer and your circumstances. These categories include:
1. Tier 2 (General) Visa
This visa is for skilled workers who have been offered a job in the UK. To qualify, the job should be on the list of eligible occupations, and the employer must have a valid Tier 2 sponsor licence.
2. Tier 2 (Intra-company Transfer) Visa
This visa is for multinational companies that need to transfer their employees to their UK branch for training, working on specific projects or filling specific posts. The applicant must have been employed by the company outside the UK for at least 12 months before applying.
3. Tier 2 (Minister of Religion) Visa
This visa is for those who want to work in a religious capacity in the UK. The applicant must have a job offer from a UK-based religious institution that holds a valid sponsor licence.
4. Tier 2 (Sportsperson) Visa
This visa is for elite athletes and coaches who have been endorsed by their sport’s governing body. The applicant must also have a job offer from a UK-based sports club.
UK Sponsored Visa Procedures:
Step 1: Check if you are eligible
Before applying for a UK Sponsored Visa, check if you meet the eligibility criteria for the visa category you are applying for. Some of the eligibility criteria may include:
– Having a valid Certificate of Sponsorship from a licensed sponsor
– Meeting the English language proficiency requirement
– Meeting the financial requirement
– Having a UK criminal record check
Step 2: Apply for the visa
Once you have confirmed that you meet the eligibility criteria, you can now apply for a UK Sponsored Visa. The application process involves:
– Completing an online application form
– Paying the visa fee
– Scheduling an appointment at a UK visa application centre to provide biometric information (photograph and fingerprints)
Step 3: Wait for a decision
After submitting your application and providing your biometric information, you will need to wait for a decision. The processing time varies depending on the visa category, but it usually takes around three weeks.
If your visa application is successful, you will be granted permission to live and work in the UK for the duration of your visa validity period.
Q: How long does it take to receive a decision on my UK Sponsored Visa application?
A: The processing time varies depending on the type of visa you are applying for, but it is usually around three weeks.
Q: Can I apply for a UK Sponsored Visa without a job offer?
A: No, you must have a job offer from a UK-based employer who holds a valid sponsor licence before you can apply for a UK Sponsored Visa.
Q: Do I need to have a certain level of English proficiency to apply for a UK Sponsored Visa?
A: Yes, you must meet the English language proficiency requirement, which can be demonstrated by either passing an approved English language test or having a degree taught in English.
Q: Can I switch to a different visa category while I am in the UK on a UK Sponsored Visa?
A: Yes, you may be able to switch to a different visa category while in the UK, but you will need to meet the eligibility criteria for the new visa category you are applying for.
Obtaining a UK Sponsored Visa can be a complex process, but it is essential if you want to work in the UK. The visa application process involves being sponsored by a UK-based employer that has a valid sponsor licence and meeting the eligibility criteria for the visa category you are applying for. With the right information and guidance, you can successfully apply for a UK Sponsored Visa and start your new job in the UK.