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Tier 2 General & Work Permit Visa

The Tier 2 General visa application process can be a minefield for anyone not completely up to date with the current immigration legislation. At Migra & Co, it’s our business to know and be fully aware of constantly changing legal requirements in order to secure the approval of our clients’ Tier 2 General visa.
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UK Work Permit Tier 2 General visa category requires that the applicant has a job offer and a Certificate of Sponsorship ("COS") issued by a UK based licenced sponsor. All overseas migrants applying for leave to enter the UK under the Work Permit category must be coming to fill a graduate level position.

Requirements under the Tier 2 Work Permit

Under the Tier 2 Work Permit category candidates will be assessed against a points test based on earnings, English language skills and available funds. All applicants will be required to meet the threshold of 70 points in order to qualify.

  • Prospective UK earnings - points are awarded according to the amount the applicant will be paid by the sponsoring employer.
  • Level of the job on offer - all positions under the Tier 2 scheme must be at a graduate level. The applicants can claim points in this category if their jobtitle and role appears on the Shortage Occupation List or their employer conducted the Resident Labour Market Test. Candidates applying for an Intra Company Transfer (ICT) will also receive maximum points.
  • English language skills - proficiency is vital to a successful Tier 2 Work Permit application. Applicants may be required to pass a test assessing their English skills, depending on their country of origin.
  • Funds - the applicants must show evidence that they have the funds to support their stay in the UK. Evidence may include a bank statement or other official financial institution documentation.

Tier 2 extension of stay in the UK

Migrants wishing to extend their visa in the UK with the same sponsor must meet the requirements similar to those for the initial entry such as:

  • the migrant has been assisgned COS for the same role; and
  • the job continues to be at the appropriate skill level; and
  • the mirgant's salary is at the appopriate level.

There is not requirement for the Resident Labour Market test for those applying for an extension. However, if the migrant if changing jobs and the new position is in a different SOC code it will be necessary to submit an initial application and satisfy the RMLT requirement unless the job falls under the exempt category. 

Change of employment

Under the PBS system a migrant can change employers, however in order to do so they will have to make a new application under the Tier 2 General category and gain approval of the UKBA before commencing employment with the new sponsor.

The new Tier 2 application will be subject to the Resident Labour Maket test (where appropriate) to ensure that no suitable settled resident workers are available to fill the post. 

Settlement in the UK

The initial leave to enter/remain under the Tier 2 visa category can be granted for up to 3 years with a possibility of further extension for additional 2 years. Leave to enter/remain as a work permit holder may lead to settlement upon completion of five years in the UK.


The UK Government imposes strict residence criteria for those sponsored under the Tier 2 category. The migrants are allowed absences of no more than 180 days over the 5 years period, excluding the business trips and holidays.

Speak to one of our Tier 2 General visa consultants now to discuss your tailor made visa solution. Call us on +44 20 3384 3075.
Migra & Co is a private immigration company, regulated by the Office of the Immigration Services Commissioner (OISC), reference number F200900038. This website is not a government website and as such, we are not linked or affiliated with the UK Visas and Immigration. We offer expert legal advice and flexible tailored solutions to both private and corporate clients to ensure that their immigration needs are met. If you wish to download or prepare a UK visa application form, you can do so free of charge by visiting the Official UKVI website.