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Moving to the UK from Nigeria

Employers in the United Kingdom have been looking for skilled workers while engaging in retention programs to keep their existing employees. With the launch of the Skilled worker Visa under the point-based immigration system, citizens from other countries now have more options when planning to move to the United Kingdom.
If you need a visa or want to find out more about the different Visa options available to Nigerian citizens, our London immigration lawyers can help and guide you to move to the UK. Call us today on 020 4502 8582.

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    Why Should I Move to the UK from Nigeria?

    The British Government has launched a number of immigration programs that can lead to permanent residency if you meet specific requirements.
    As Nigerian citizens, many benefits come with residing in the United Kingdom.

    Some of these benefits are listed below:

    1. An abundance of job opportunities: Industries are seeking highly skilled workers to come and work in the UK due to the high skill shortage in the country. With the high unemployment rate in Nigeria, potential applicants would be making a good choice to work abroad.
    2. Opportunity to acquire globally competitive work experience: Workers would gain transferrable work experience and become globally employable persons.
    3. Favourable labour laws: The United Kingdom boasts one of the best labour laws in the world that cater to the needs of workers.
    4. Free public schools: Children of legal immigrants can attend high-quality free public schools once their parents obtain permanent residence in the UK.
    5. Great healthcare service: The United Kingdom is home to the National Health Service (NHS), one of the best universal healthcare systems in the world. The NHS has been rated the best healthcare system several times and caters to the needs of both legal residents and citizens.
    6. Pathway to the rest of Europe: Legal immigrants can decide to relocate to or visit other parts of Europe for legitimate reasons from the UK once they become UK citizens or permanent residents.
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    What is Required to Apply for a UK Visa in Nigeria?

    Visa requirements to move to the UK from Nigeria varies according to the various UK visa types.
    However, potential migrants should have a valid passport, or travel document, have proof of funds to support themselves in certain circumstances and not have a criminal history.

    How Can I Apply for a UK Visa From Nigeria?

    You can submit a UK Visa application by following the steps below

    • Determine the visa type for which you are eligible and the required documents.
    • Prepare your application and gather the required documents. Find out when to apply for your visa type and how to change or cancel your application.
    • Prove your identity to the UK Government by booking and going for an appointment at a Visa Application Centre (VAC) where you will submit your biometric information and passport.
    • You will also need to submit copies of your evidence (or documents) online before the appointment date or at the venue, depending on your chosen option when booking. An example of a Visa Application Centre in Nigeria is TLSContact which has offices in Lagos and Abuja.
    • If your application is successful, you will receive your passport with a sticker (also known as a vignette) which shows details about your visa. These details include visa type, visa validity period and visa conditions.
    • You also get a mail or letter if your visa application was unsuccessful, explaining why and what your options are. Find out more about the documents you need and the steps for applying for a UK Visa.

    What UK Visa types are available to Nigerians?

    There is a broad range of options to consider under the UK Immigration system – from High-Value Migrants to Temporary workers. Depending on their eligibility, Nigerians can apply to any of the visa categories below:

    Work Visa for Nigerians

    These types of visas permit Nigerians to work in the UK.

    One common work visa Nigerians apply for is the Skilled Worker Visa.

    Skilled Worker Visa for Nigerians

    This visa type, formerly known as the Tier 2 (General) work visa, allows you to move to the UK to work in a skilled job for an approved employer or sponsor who is a UK-based company or business in the UK that holds a UKVI sponsorship licence.

    How can a Nigerian Qualify for a Skilled Worker Visa?

    As a Nigerian, you qualify for this type of visa if you meet the following requirements:

    • You must have accepted a valid job offer from an employer approved by the UK Government and received a valid Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS). The common way to find a job is to apply to vacancies of eligible sponsors, using their application form and including a personal statement where you show you meet the job and person specifications.
    • This job must be on the list of eligible occupations and pay the minimum salary for the type of work. Find out the list of approved or licensed sponsors.
    • You must provide evidence of your English language proficiency by submitting a test result from a Secure English Language Test Provider (SELT). Find the list of approved test providers for applicants outside the UK.
    • The acceptable minimum level is level B1 on the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR) scale. The most common test provider in Nigeria is the IELTS SELT Consortium which administers IELTS for UKVI or IELTS Life Skills.
    • You must prove your identity by booking and fulfilling an appointment at a Visa Application Centre (VAC) where your biometric information and passport will be received and processed.
    • You need to prove you have enough personal savings as well and pay both the application fee and health surcharge for yourself and any other person moving to the UK with you.

    Find out more about the Skilled Worker Visa, its fees and the requirements for its renewal.

    Other visa types that fall under the Work Visa category include the ICT VisaSportsperson Visa, and Minister of Religion Visa.

    Find out more about these visa types and eligibility requirements.

    UK Family Visa for Nigerians

    Nigerians who are related to a British Citizen or UK permanent resident can migrate to the UK through the family routes available and for which they are eligible. However, they must prove that the relationship they claim to have with their family members is genuine.

    UK Spouse Visa for Nigerians

    With this visa, you can join your spouse in the UK, provided both of you are aged 18 years or over and are married or in a civil partnership recognized in the UK. Furthermore, you must have met personally at least once before getting married and have been living together for the past 2 years before you apply.

    Other types of Visas under the UK family Visa for Nigerians include Fiancé Visa, Unmarried Partner Visa, and Ancestry Visa. Find out more about the various Family Visas and the requirements you should meet to join your family member in the UK.

    Student Visa for Nigerians

    This Visa type, once known as the Tier 4 Visa, is a common visa pathway for adults who want to study a higher education course at a UK educational institution. Nigerians who are aged 18 or older can apply for a UK student visa provided they meet the requirements.

    If your age falls between 4 and 17, you can still apply for another type of study visa known as the Child Student Visa provided you meet the eligibility requirements. Find out all you need to know about the student visa for Nigerians, including requirements and costs.

    Visas for Nigerian Entrepreneurs moving to the UK

    This visa type, also known as Tier 1 Visa, is for Nigerian high-value migrants and entrepreneurs who want to move to the UK. The visa types available under this category are listed below

    • Investor Visa: This visa allows interested Nigerian investors who can make an investment of at least £2,000,000 in active UK companies to come to the UK and invest. At this time, the visa is currently closed to applications.
    • Global Talent Visa: This visa type is available to Nigerians who are internationally recognized as leaders in areas such as digital technology, arts and culture, and research or academia. They must have either received endorsement or an international award.
    • If they have been given any prize from the list of eligible prizes, they may bypass the endorsement stage and go on to apply directly for their visa. Read more about the Global Talent Visa.
    • Start-Up Visa: This visa type is for Nigerian individuals who want to set up an innovative business in the UK. Here, there is no minimum investment, but the business must be entirely new to the UK market. Find out other requirements to apply for it.
    • Innovator Visa: This visa is for Nigerian entrepreneurs who wish to set up and run an innovative business in the UK. It is similar to the Start-Up Visa. Read more about the Innovator Visa, including its eligibility requirements.

    Do you need help with moving to the UK from Nigeria, our team can assist you. Contact us

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      How Can Nigerians Apply for UK Permanent Residency?

      You must have been living in the UK for at least five years legally without spending more than 180 days outside the UK in any 12-month period to become a permanent resident. You must also prove your knowledge of British customs and show an acceptable proficiency in the English Language.

      You may, then, apply for an Indefinite Leave to Remain in the UK which, if successful, grants you the right to stay in the UK indefinitely and remove immigration restrictions.

      However, you cannot vote or get a UK passport until you become a UK citizen.

      How Can London Immigration Lawyer Help?

      Our team of exceptional London immigration lawyers have a wealth of experience in visa applications of all types. We will guide you through each step of the visa application process, ensuring you receive the outcome you desire.

      You will receive:

      • A thorough document check to ensure that all necessary paperwork is in place
      • The completion of your application form to the highest possible standard
      • A Letter of Representation that outlines the strengths of your case to the Home Office, drawing attention to relevant laws in support of your application
      • Regular contact with the Home Office throughout the application process

      Call us today on 020 4502 8582 or chat with us online to start your immigration journey.

      Get in touch with our team today to learn more about our professional services. Contact us

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                  Frequently Asked Questions

                  You can stay in the UK for as long as your visa status permits. Those who have long-term work visas can stay for five years before they have to renew their status. Nigerians with an Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) can stay indefinitely and become UK citizens upon meeting certain eligibility standards.

                  If you meet the eligibility requirements to move to the UK, it is easy to move, especially with the help of an immigration expert.

                  Yes, the benefits you can enjoy in the UK are certainly better. Some of these benefits are job opportunities, high-quality free public schools for your children, and access to one of the best healthcare systems in the world.

                  Yes. Some UK Visa categories do not require a job and you can apply, if eligible. These include the Investor visa, Global Talent Visa, Start-up Visa and Student Visa.

                  Yes, you need a Visa to enter the UK for any reason. You should apply for whichever visa type you are eligible for and have it approved before you travel to the UK.

                  The standard Visitor Visa application fee is currently $123 for a short-term of up to six months. The cost for other types of UK Visas is higher.

                  You will be given a unique tax reference number to facilitate income tax payment once you start working in the UK.

                  You must also apply for a National Insurance number (NI Number) before you start working. You will need this number to claim benefits or UK pension and you will need the unique tax reference to claim a UK tax return if eligible.