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Senior or Specialist Worker Visa to Skilled Worker Visa

You may be eligible to apply to switch from a Senior or Specialist Worker Visa (Global Business Mobility) to a Skilled Worker Visa if you’re already in the UK. Your dependents, too, can apply for the change separately. They can apply with you or any time before the Senior or Specialist Worker Visa expires.

We’re a team of London immigration specialists who work towards solving all your immigration issues.

For more information on the application process, eligibility requirements, and other relevant details, call our lawyers at 020 4502 8582. In-person, via phone, or online, we’re here to help you.

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    Why Switch from a Senior or Specialist Worker Visa to a Skilled Worker visa?

    You can switch from a UK Global Business Mobility Senior or Specialist Worker Visa to a Skilled Worker Visa because of the many benefits accrued.

    Senior or Specialist Worker Visa allows foreign nationals in certain roles and occupations to come and work at a UK branch for their employer overseas. The only advantage it has over the Skilled Worker Visa is the absence of language requirement.

    On the other hand, a Skilled Worker Visa allows immigrants to come to and stay in the UK and do eligible jobs. It has a validity of 5 years, after which you can extend it.

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    Benefits of a Skilled Worker Visa over a Senior or Specialist Worker Visa

    Most specialist workers are moving to the skilled worker route because its requirements are more favourable than the specialist worker visa requirements. Here’s how:

    Permanent residency: A Skilled Worker Visa is an ideal pathway to settlement in the UK after 5 years. You can also become a citizen after the 6th year. The Senior or Specialist Worker Visa is a temporary residence visa that allows the holder to undertake a temporary work assignment in the UK.

    Cost: The Skilled Worker Visa application is relatively less expensive than the Specialist Worker Visa application. Although both have the same standard cost, the skilled worker option has a shortage occupations list that’s significantly cheap.

    Educational requirement: Skilled Worker Visa candidates have lower educational prerequisites than Senior or Specialist Worker Visa applicants. While the global business mobility routes require you to have RQF Level 4 (School leaver), you must have RQF Level 6 (Undergraduate degree) to apply for the skilled worker option.

    Work experience: You must have 12 months prior service unless you’re paid a UK package of more than £73,900 for the Senior or Specialist Worker route. A skilled worker route requires no work experience for you to apply.

    What are the Eligibility Requirements to switch from a Senior Or Specialist Worker Visa to a Skilled Worker Visa?

    You must meet specific requirements to switch from an Intra-Company Transfer Visa to a Skilled Worker Visa. They include the Skilled Worker Visa criteria and several other conditions.

    Skilled Worker Eligibility Requirement

    • You must meet the minimum salary requirement of £25,600 per year or £10.10 per hour, whichever is higher.
    • You must meet the required educational level: at least RQF level 3 equivalent.
    • Your potential job must be listed among the eligible occupations.
    • Your employer must have a valid Certificate of Sponsorship.
    • Your employer must be licenced by the Home Office.
    • You must have a valid job offer from a UK employer.

    Other requirements include the following:

    • Apply within the last 3 months before the commencement of the new sponsored job.
    • Be in the UK when applying to switch to a Skilled Worker Visa.
    • Be holders of a valid Intra-Company Transfer Visa.

    Also, you must fulfil the language and the financial requirement as set out by the Home Office:

    Language Requirement

    The English language is crucial when switching to a Skilled Worker Visa. Unfortunately, there’s nothing to show that you have met that prerequisite as set by the Home Office.

    However, there are other ways you can meet the language requirement, including the following:

    • If you have an English-taught academic degree
    • If your origin is a majority English-speaking nation such as Australia, The Bahamas, Belize, Canada, and Grenada.
    • Passing an English language test from an authorised provider

    Also, if you got educated in the UK under 18, you only need to prove that you have a GCSE or A level in English.

    If your job offer under the Skilled Worker Visa is for a nurse, midwife, dentist, or doctor role, you can meet the language requirement by passing an English Language assessment. Even so, the results must be accepted by the relevant regulatory body.

    Financial Requirement

    Financial ability is a requirement you must meet if you have been in the UK for less than 12 months at the date of your application to change to a Skilled Worker visa.

    If that’s the case, you must show proof that you have a minimum of £1,270 in your bank account. Also, you must be able to access these funds for at least 28 days within 31 days of making a visa application.

    If you don’t have enough funds, your UK sponsor can affirm that they’ll maintain and accommodate you for at least the first month of your employment. The information must be included on the Certificate of Sponsorship.

    However, if you have been working in the country as a Senior or Specialist Worker Visa holder for more than 12 months on the application date, you automatically meet the financial requirement.

    Skilled Worker Visa Occupations Eligibility Requirements

    Your new job under the Skilled Worker Visa must meet specific eligibility requirements, including the following:

    • Be paid the minimum salary or the going rate for that job (whichever is higher).
    • Must be on the eligible jobs list, and its job description matches your role.
    • You must have a copy of your occupation code from your job employer.
    • Your sponsoring employer must be approved by the home office.

    How Do I apply to switch from a Senior or Specialist Worker Visa to a Skilled Worker visa?

    You apply to switch from the intra-company transfer visa to a Skilled Worker visa by filling out an online form. Provide the required information, upload all the necessary documents, and pay the relevant fees.  Contact us for assistance if you have need advice in completing your application.

    What Documents Do I Need to Apply to Switch?

    You must upload all the supporting documents for your switching application. While some documents are common to all applicants, others depend on specific circumstances. The standard ones include the following:

    • Passport or another travel document to prove your nationality and identity.
    • Employer’s name and licence number (per the Certificate of Sponsorship).
    • English language requirement compliance proof (language test certificate).
    • Certificate of sponsorship reference number from your UK employer.
    • Your biometrics: Scan your photo and fingerprints.
    • Job title and gross annual salary proof.
    • Relevant occupation code.

    Other documents that you may need for your Skilled Worker Visa include the following:

    • Proof of your relationship with your dependent partner or children if applying at the same time as you.
    • Financial ability proof, like a bank statement, unless your sponsor certifies to support you.
    • A clean criminal record certificate, if your job requires one.

    Also, you’ll need to provide a certified translation if your documents are not in English or Welsh.

    If you need help in your application to switch to the Skilled Worker Route, call us today and let our specialist lawyers guide you.

    Get in touch with our expert immigration lawyers receive assistance on Switching from a Senior or Specialist Worker Visa to a Skilled Worker visa. Contact us

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      Do I Need a Cooling-Off Period Before Switching to a Skilled Worker Visa?

      No, you don’t need a cooling-off period before switching to a Skilled Worker Visa. Under the new UK point-based system, you can switch without leaving the country to apply from abroad.

      Previously, that wasn’t the case. Instead, applicants were subject to a cooling-off period of 12 months. Nonetheless, you must meet the Skilled Worker Visa eligibility requirement. There are no exemptions for Senior Or Specialist Worker Visa holders.

      Removing this requirement is a great relief to both the workers and employers. It’s more flexible to the former and increases the latter’s foreign recruitment opportunities.

      How Much Will Switching from a Senior or Specialist Worker Visa to a Skilled Worker Visa Cost?

      How much you pay to switch depends on your job offer type and length of stay. Hence, whether you’re applying from inside or outside the UK, the standard fee is as follows:

      • Up to 3 years: £719 per person
      • More than 3 years: £1,423 per person

      For the shortage occupation list jobs, you’ll pay a lower application fee as indicated below:

      • Up to 3 years: £479 per person
      • More than 3 years: £943 per person

      Other relevant charges include the following:

      Healthcare surcharge for all your years of stay. The fee is usually £624 per year and is paid upfront for the entire period.

      At least £1,270 maintenance fee. You must prove that you have this amount in your bank account for upkeep in the UK. However, you mustn’t show proof if you have been in the country for the past 12 months, or your employer will provide it during your first month.

      Also, you need to show proof for your dependents’ (partner and children) upkeep funds as outlined below:

      • Partner: £285
      • One child: £315
      • Each additional child: £200

      The other cost involved in switching is the required immigration skills charge. It’s the charge for each foreign worker that a sponsoring employer seeks to employ. The charge is paid every time the sponsoring employer assigns a Certificate of Sponsoring.

      When Can I Switch from a Senior or Specialist Worker Visa to the Skilled Worker Route?

      You can switch from a Global Business Mobility Visa To Skilled Worker Visa 3 months before your new job’s commencement date. Also, ensure that you apply for a new visa before the expiry of the previous one.

      Usually, it takes 8 weeks after applying to get a decision. However, it’s currently taking up to 11 weeks to get a Skilled Worker Visa application feedback. It may take longer on special occasions like the need for document verification, interview attendance, or personal circumstances.

      Furthermore, you can pay to make the decision process faster. In this case, you need to pay an extra £500 to have your visa processed within 5 working days.

      How Can London Immigration Lawyers Help?

      Changing from a Senior Or Specialist Worker Visa to a Skilled Worker Visa is essential. A Skilled Worker Visa is less expensive, has reduced educational requirements, requires no work experience, and, most importantly, is a reliable path to permanent residence and citizenship in the UK.

      Hence, if you want a smooth and fast switching process, London Immigration Lawyers are here to ensure a stress-free process with the maximum chances of success.

      How? We assign you an immigration lawyer who perfectly matches your individual needs. The lawyer will offer you tailored legal advice, application, and appeal services. The expert will assess your needs, goals, and eligibility and then guide and support you at every step of the application journey.

      The legal professional will ensure that you meet all the requirements of a Skilled Worker applicant as per the UKVI and Home Office demands.

      For more information about our services and how we can help in your situation,  call us at 020 4502 8582. We’ll ensure that you and your family get your new visas within the minimum time possible.

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                Frequently Asked Questions

                Yes, your dependents need to apply to switch to a skilled Worker Visa. Your spouse or children must apply for this visa separately. They must do so simultaneously as you or before the current visa expires.

                Yes, switching to a Skilled Worker visa is possible whilst on a different visa in the UK. All you need to do is apply for the visa 3 months before your new job begins and be a valid visa holder. You must also meet the English language and financial ability requirements.

                Yes, UK Skilled Worker Visa can be rejected. The Home Office can refuse your visa for reasons such as failure to meet the salary requirement, information insufficiency or incorrectness, lack of maintenance funds, incompetency for the skill, or simple mistakes. We can help you to take the next course of action depending on the reason for the refusal.

                No, you can’t app for a Skilled Worker Visa without a sponsor. The visa is a sponsorship system, and you must have a job offer from a UK employer before applying. However, your employer must be approved by the UK sponsorship management system (SMS).

                No, it isn’t hard to get a Skilled Worker Visa UK. However, it’s a general perception that coming and working in the country is a tough process. Although it might not be straightforward, like in other countries, getting this visa is possible. Fortunately, we help you by providing professional advice and even processing the visa.

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