Switching from Tier 5 to Tier 2 Work Permits
We get asked this quite regularly on our chat service on our website, by recruiters and consultants themselves. If you are a consultant and would like to discuss your options please get in touch with us via our form.
The Tier 5 or as it is more commonly referred to, the Working Holiday Visa, is valid for 2 years. Once the visa expires it is not renewable.
Previously consultants could move onto Tier 1 Visas (Highly Skilled Migrants Visa) but the Tier 1 has been largely scrapped. If you do wish to remain in the UK to work your only option now is to look at Tier 2 Work Permit sponsorship.
From April 2011 the UKBA split Tier 2 applications into ‘in country’ and ‘out of country’ applications. Those able to switch ‘in country’ are those currently holding existing Tier 2 (General) visas, Tier 1 (HSMP) or Post Study Work visas.
For anyone applying from outside the UK and also for those changing visa statuses from a Tier 5 Youth Mobility Visa to a Tier 2 General Visa the application will be considered ‘out of country’. The process if which is as follows;
1) The Company completes the RLMT (Residence Labour Market Test) which takes 28 days.
2) Company sponsoring the Tier 2 Work Permit lodges an application with the UKBA for a COS (Certificate of sponsorship). UKBA now only sit once a month to approve ‘out of country applications’ and all applications for a given month need to be lodged by the 5th of that month.
3) The applications are approved between 11th and 13th of that month. The UKBA informs the company of the success of the application and issues the COS.
4) The Company sends a copy of the COS to the candidate.
5) Candidate takes COS along with an Entry Clearance form and other substantiating documents to a British Consulate in their country of residence to obtain ‘Entry Clearance’. It’s also worth noting that some nationalities have to complete an English language test.
So if you’re planning to remain working in the UK after your Tier 5 expires these are the issues you’ll need to consider;
1) Have you got a Consulting Company that can sponsor your Tier 2 Work Permit so you can keep doing similar work?
2) You will need to return to your country of origin to obtain ‘Entry Clearance’.
For further information and a free assessment please get in touch with us via our form.