Skilled Worker Visa - Process, Fees and Costs
A Skilled Worker Visa allows migrants to come and/or stay in the UK in order to work in an eligible job, for an approved employer (with an sponsor license). This visa has replaced the previous “Tier 2 (General) work visa”.
This is part 2 of our “Skilled Worker Visa” series, where we give a bit of insight into what the Skilled Worker visa is, and what are its application processes, eligibility, fees and costs.
What is the Minimum Salary Threshold Requirement for a Skilled Worker Visa?
There must be an offered salary at the job position that you will be fulfilling. This must either equal or exceed the threshold salary, which is general. Also, the ‘going rate’ for the occupation, depending on which one is higher.
There must be at least £25,000 generally offered per year, although, if the “going rate” for the job position is going to be higher, then there will be no need. For the new points-based system there are expectations to the owing.
£20,480 is the complete minimum salary possible for you to be eligible for the Skilled Worker Visa.
What is the Points-Based Immigration System?
The UK’s Points-based immigration system is what the new Skilled Worker Visa is based on. There is a score of 70 points, which applicants must meet to be eligible for the visa. Applicants can get these points through a shortage occupation position and their level of education.
What are the mandatory points for a Skilled Worker visa?
- 20 points, which will come from an offered job position from a UK company with a sponsorship license.
- 20 points for an appropriate skill level job.
- 10 points for English-language ability at B1 level.
If the salary offered is either at least £25,600 per year, or the “going rate” for this job (whichever is higher), the applicant will accrue the 20 points left to reach the required 70 points.
However, tradable points can allow the applicant to reach the 70-point threshold without having necessary salary of at least £25,600.
How do the tradeable points from the UK Skilled Worker visa system work?
- 0 points: At least 80% of the going rate for the profession or a salary of at least £20,480 to £23,039 (whichever is the highest).
- 10 points: At least 90% of the going rate for the profession or a salary of at least £23,040 to £25,599 (whichever is the highest).
- 20 points: At least the going rate for the profession or a salary of £25,600 or above (whichever is the highest).
- 10 points: For a job in a shortage occupation.
- 10 points: PhD in a subject relevant to the job.
- 20 points: In a STEM subject relevant to the job.
Keep in mind that the salary rules are different for jobs in education and healthcare. The relevant independent body is the one that sets the going rates for these jobs.
Skilled Worker Visa Application Process
You must apply online for the Skilled Worker Visa. If you are switching from an eligible visa or extending a current work visa, you can either apply for the visa from outside the UK, or inside the UK.
You will need proof of your identity as part of your application process. You will have to provide either your biometric information (your fingerprints and a photo) or use the ‘UK Immigration: ID Check’ app to scan your identity document. When you complete the application, you will be informed of what you need to do next.
You have up to three months before the day you are due to start your job role to apply for the visa. You can expect a decision within 3 weeks if you apply from outside of the UK. There will be a wait for up to 8 weeks to receive a decision on your application if you apply from inside the UK.
If the documents and the information that you provide is insufficient, the application process may take longer. You may also get asked to verify some specific documents or to attend an interview.
Skilled Worker Visa Fees and Costs
The allowance for the Skilled Worker Visa can vary depending on the certain situations of the applicant and their application.
When applying from outside the UK the allowances are:
- An application of three years can come up to £610 per person.
- An application of more than three years can also come up to £1,220 per person.
Applying from inside of the UK, the allowances are:
- An application for three years can come up to £704 per person.
- An application for more than three years can come to £1,408.
A shortage occupation list in which your job position is at, the allowances are:
- If staying up to three years, it is £464.
- If staying for more than three years, it is £928.
Regardless of whether you apply inside or outside the UK this applies.
There will be a reduction of £55 in your Skilled Worker Visa application allowance if you are from one the following countries:
- Czech Republic
- The Netherlands
- North Macedonia
There will be an allowance that must be paid, from you to the immigration health surcharge, as a Skilled Worker Visa holder. Normally, you will have to pay the price of £624 per year annually.
When applying it is key to keep in mind that translation allowances and English language test allowances too.