UK Work Permit - common questions

16 common questions we get from people about UK work permits:

  1. Can I get a work permit and then go to the UK to look for work? No, all Tier 2 work permits must be sponsored by a UK employer. So once you have a work permit, you have already accepted employment with a UK company. You can enter on a Tier 1 or Tier 5 visa (if you qualify) and find work after you have landed. Note that you are not allowed to use a tourist or business visa to try to find work in the UK. If you enter the UK on a business or tourist visa with the objective of getting a job whilst you are in the UK, you run the risk of being refused entry.
  2. I already have a UK permit, can you help me find work? We are not a recruitment company so this is not our core business but we can direct you to UK recruitment agencies.
  3. I’m already in UK, can I change sponsor? Yes you can. If you’re on a Tier 2 General then you can change sponsors without having to leave the country.
  4. Do I need to be in the UK for the sponsorship process to start? No you don’t. The process can take place with you outside of the country. Only once the Certificate of Sponsorship is issued and you have received Entry Clearance from the UK Consulate in your country of origin do you need to enter the UK to activate your Work Permit.
  5. Can I work for more than one client? Yes you can, you can work for as many clients as you like.
  6. How much will I net after tax? Between 55-65% of your gross earnings depending on your earning rate and your level of claimable expenses.
  7. Can I switch visa?
    • T1 to T2? YES
    • T4 to T2? YES
    • ICT to T2? YES but not if you’re in the UK on a Short Term ICT or if your ICT was issued after April 2011. In the both of these cases you need to sit out a 12 month ‘cooling off period’.
  8. Do I have to work full time? Yes
  9. Can I setup my own business whilst on a UK work permit? Yes as long as the role that you’ve been sponsored on remains your ‘primary source of income’.
  10. What professions / job titles can get sponsored? IT, Telco, Finance and Engineering.
  11. Do I need a degree? Not necessarily but it depends on your earning rate, experience and skill set.
  12. How much commercial experience do I need? Generally 7 years or more.
  13. What documentation do I need to supply? Copy of your passport, degree certificates/professional diplomas and copies of your professional references (last 3 years at least)
  14. Can my spouse also work in the UK? Yes
  15. Can my children come with me? Yes
  16. How long will it take? If you are in UK on a Work Permit already it can be as quick as 2 weeks. Otherwise from outside the uk it will take 2-8 weeks but this is dependant on the processing times with UK government and what time of the month your application is made.

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Client comment

"Great advice and excellent service on contracting and immigration solutions in the UK. I would highly recommend Tim and the team to assist you with accurate, clear and concise contracting advice in the UK or any other country for that matter."

Prishen Pillay,Global DBA Operations Lead

Shell International Trading & Shipping