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Senior or Specialist Worker Visa UK: Global Business Mobility Routes
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Senior or Specialist Worker Visa UK: Global Business Mobility Routes

Updated: 16 May, 2024

For a business, having the right people in the right places is one of the most important aspects to ensure its continued success. The Senior or Specialist Worker visa offers you exactly that opportunity. 

Whether you are a business looking to bring your overseas talent over to work for your UK operation, or a Senior worker who is being transferred to the UK base of their employer, our immigration lawyers can assist you. Our Immigration team led by Dr Lusine Navasardyan comprises the best immigration lawyers specialising in work visas in the UK. We can guide you and your business from beginning to end in respect of how to obtain a Worker visa for a Senior or Specialist Worker. 

Senior or Specialist Worker Visa UK (FAQs)

What is a Senior or Specialist Worker Visa?

A Senior or Specialist Worker Visa allows a UK business to bring their Senior or Specialist employee to their UK office or branch.

If you are a business looking to bring to the UK some of your Senior workers or your specialist staff from your overseas operation, then you will be able to use this route. As a first step, the UK business will need to obtain a Sponsorship Licence for this route. In effect, the Senior/Specialist visa has replaced the Intra-company Transfer visa, which was previously the Tier 2 (Intra-company Transfer) Long-term Staff visa.

Under this route, you can bring your senior manager or specialist employee to undertake temporary work assignments in the UK. The sponsoring UK business must be linked to the employer overseas. At RVS Solicitors, our highly experienced UK immigration lawyers can assess the links between the two businesses and advise you in respect of the possibility to use this route.

What are the eligibility requirements for the Senior or Specialist Worker visa?

To be eligible for the Senior/Specialist Worker visa, you must demonstrate that you have obtained 60 points as follows:

  • 20 Points for Sponsorship – this means having a ‘Valid ‘certificate of sponsorship’ from your employer in the UK
  • 20 points for a job at an appropriate skill level – This means your occupation is eligible for the Senior or Specialist Worker visa
  • 20 points for salary – this means you need to show the minimum eligible salary required of your specific job or £42,400 per year, whichever is the lowest 

Further to the above, there are some other requirements that you need to prove:

  • Proof of working for your employer outside the UK 
  • Aged 18 or over 
  • Valid passport, ID and travel documents 
  • Proof of maintenance funds of at least £1,270
  • Valid tuberculosis test certificate, if from a listed country

Is the job eligible of a UK Senior or Specialist Worker visa? 

To see if the job is eligible for a UK Senior or Specialist Work visa, check the eligible occupation and codes.

Search for the title of your job (e.g. ‘financial manager’). If your job is listed as eligible, you will see a 4-digit occupation code for your occupation in the left-hand column, with related job titles in the right-hand column. Make sure that the code is eligible for the Global Mobility routes. If you are unsure about the best occupation code for your position, speak to our specialist UK work visa lawyers, who can guide and support you. 

What is a ‘Certificate of Sponsorship’? 

The Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) will need to be provided by the UK business, that is sponsoring the worker. The Certificate of Sponsorship is obtained via the Sponsorship Management System and is available only for A rated Sponsors.  The sponsor also must hold a valid license for sponsoring workers under this visa category and ensure that the employment offered in the UK fulfills relevant skills and salary requirements to qualify as an eligible occupation. 

The CoS is an electronic document, outlining the role, the salary and other details of the sponsored employment. The certificate will have its own reference number which you would use to apply for a visa. Your application for a visa should be done within 3 months of receiving your certificate. 

Length of employment outside the UK for Senior or Specialist visa:

To be eligible for sponsorship under this route, you normally need to prove that you have worked for your employer for a certain amount of time, before being posted to the UK branch. 

If you are paid less than £73,900 a year, you must currently be working for an overseas employer and must have done so for a cumulative period of at least 12 months. 

On the other hand, if you are earning £73,900 a year or more, there is no minimum time requirement for how long you must have work for your employer outside the UK. In this case, although you still will need to be currently working for an overseas business linked to your UK sponsor, you will not need to have been doing so for a specific time period. 

How long can I stay in the UK on a Senior or Specialist Worker visa? 

You are allowed to stay in the UK according to the time given on your certificate of sponsorship plus an additional 14 days. 

However, you can extend your visa or apply for another Senior or Specialist Worker visa as many times as you like up to the maximum allowable stay. 

The maximum time you are allowed to stay in the UK on a Senior or Specialist Worker visa depends on your salary. If you are paid less than £73,900 a year, you can stay in the UK for up to 5 years in any 6-year period. But if you are paid £73,900 a year or more, you can stay for a maximum of 9 years in any 10-year period. 

Any time you spend in the UK on any of the Global Business Mobility visas, as well as the Intra-company Graduate Trainee visa and Intra-company Transfer visa, will be included in your maximum stay. 

Can I bring my dependents on a UK Senior or Specialist visa?

We recognise the importance of staying close to your family as you pursue your career. Our team can help your partner and children apply to join you as your dependents, so that separation from you family does not occur while you are in the UK. By guiding you through the eligibility criteria for dependants, we will advise you directly on the costs and fees that are involved. 

You must provide evidence of your relationship with your dependants as follows:

  • Relationship with husband, wife, civil partner or unmarried partner 
  • Relationship with child under the age of 18
  • Relationship with child over the age of 18 (if they are currently in the UK as your dependent) 

We can advise you specifically on your individual situation, by collecting details that satisfy the requirements for any dependents you wish to bring. In addition, your dependents need to show that they have a certain amount of money available to support themselves while they are in the UK. 

How can I apply for the UK Senior or Specialist Worker visa?

The application for a Senior or Specialist Worker visa is an online one. 

As part of the application, you are required to prove your identity. This is done by having your fingerprints and photograph taken at a visa application centre nearest to you. As part of your application, you will also be required to submit your evidence to the Home Office. 

How can RVS Solicitors help you obtain a UK Senior or Specialist Worker visa?

At RVS Solicitors, we celebrate workers and businesses embarking on new opportunities for rewarding prospects in the UK. Our team can deliver accurate and detailed advice to help you build a life in the UK through a Senior or Specialist Worker visa. 

Our team is experienced in making successful visa applications on the behalf of clients, we are prepared to guide you through each step of the application process. Whether it is helping you locate visa application centres, gathering documents of evidence or simply extending or updating your UK Worker visa, we are dedicated to advising you every step of the way. 

We are highly regarded for successfully representing businesses and helping them strengthen their teams. You can be assured that your talent and efforts will be rewarded and not negatively affected from visa application errors and oversights.  We have worked closely with employers to help them gain Sponsor Licenses, Certificates of Sponsorships and work visas for their employees. Our skills and knowledge of the background processes qualify us to deliver advice suited to your circumstances and avoid costly mistakes.

To find out more about how we can assist you with obtaining a Senior or Specialist worker Visa, please contact our London office at 020 3372 5125 or complete our online enquiry form to make an appointment. Find out more information on our fees and timescales here.

To read more about similar issues please visit our blog or read about how we have helped others in similar circumstances by visiting our success stories

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Senior or Specialist Worker Visa UK: Global Business Mobility Routes
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Senior or Specialist Worker Visa UK: Global Business Mobility Routes
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