Extending Your Tier 2 Visa
The Tier 2 Visa is the primary immigration route through which overseas nationals take up employment in the UK. If your application for a Tier 2 Visa is approved, it is usually valid for an initial three-year period.
However, it is possible for holders of the visa to extend their stay in the UK beyond this three-year period. To do this, a visa extension must be applied for before your current leave to remain comes to an end.
The IAS legal time are hugely adept at assisting with the Tier 2 Visa Extension application process. We will work alongside you and your employer to ensure you receive your desired outcome. in touch on 020 4502 8582 or enquire online- we’re here to assist you.
What are the eligibility requirements for extending a Tier 2 Visa?
When applying for an extension, your eligibility is dependent on whether you continue to meet the requirements for the Tier 2 visa category. With this in mind, it is crucial that your job role and annual salary still qualifies for a UK work permit.
To be eligible for a Tier 2 Visa, you will need:
- Proof that you have the necessary level of English language ability
- Biometric information- this includes fingerprints and a digital photograph of yourself
- Evidence that you have enough funds available to support yourself and your family
- A new Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS)
- An appropriate salary for your role- if your salary is less than it was when you originally applied for a visa, you will not be eligible for an extension
How long will it take for an extension application to be processed?
In the vast majority of cases, a Tier 2 Visa Extension application will be processed within eight weeks of its submission. However, failing to submit appropriate evidence in support of your application could lead to delays. This is because the Home Office will need more time to review your case.
Additionally, there are certain circumstances in which you will be required to attend an interview to confirm your eligibility- this can also lead to delays.
You are able to submit your extension application up to 60 days prior to the expiration of your current leave to remain.
If your application is time sensitive, you can opt for the Home Office’s Super Priority Service- this enables you to receive a decision within one working day.
Our London immigration lawyers can help you with the Tier 2 extension application process, please call our London immigration lawyers on 020 4502 8582.
How do I apply to extend my visa?
If you are a Tier 2 Visa holder that wishes to remain in UK-based employment, it is possible to apply for a visa extension.
You must submit your extension application prior to the expiration of your current visa. In addition, you must apply from within the UK.
If your employer decides to extend your contract, they will need to apply for an unrestricted Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS). However, retaking the Resident Labour Market Test is not necessary.
Is it possible to move from a Tier 2 Visa to Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR)?
In order to be eligible for Indefinite Leave to Remain, an individual must have been continuously resident in the UK for at least five years.
As a Tier 2 Visa is initially only granted for three years, extending your visa is a necessary part of being eligible for ILR.
If your extension application is successful, your visa will be valid for three more years. You can apply for ILR once to of these additional three years have passed.
I work for a new employer- can I still extend my visa?
If you no longer work for the employer that sponsored your original Tier 2 application, you will not be eligible to extend your visa.
If you wish to change your current role or work for a different employer entirely, you will need to apply for a new visa. Your employer will need to re-take the Resident Labour Market Test and obtain a new Certificate of Sponsorship.
Is it possible to extend a Tier 2 Dependent Visa?
It is possible for Tier 2 Visa holders to bring their dependents to the UK with them. This is done through applying for a Tier 2 Dependent Visa. ‘Dependent’ in this sense refers to the partner or child of the main visa applicant.
It is also possible to include your dependents on your extension application. If your child has turned 18 during your time in the UK, they will need to apply separately.
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If your employer decides to extend your contract, an unrestricted Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) will need to be applied for. Your employer will not need to re-take the Resident Labour Market Test prior to assigning your new CoS.
You should apply for a Tier 2 Visa extension either within three months of your new CoS being issued, or 60 days before the expiration of your current visa- whichever comes sooner.
If your dependents are included on your current Tier 2 Visa, they can also be included on your visa extension.
However, if they reach the age of 18 during your time in the UK, they will need to apply for a sperate visa.
Once your application to extend your visa has been submitted, it should usually be processed within eight weeks.
If you need a decision on your application quickly, you can opt for the Priority Service. This should provide you with a decision within 10 days. It is also possible to pay extra for a same-day result.
At the Immigration Advice Service, we understand the immense importance of securing continued employment in the UK. For this reason, we do everything within our power to help our clients through the Tier 2 Visa Extension process.
If you opt for our services, our legal team will:
- Complete your application form in full to the highest possible standard;
- Frequently liaise with the Home Office throughout the application process until a decision is reached;
- Conduct a thorough documentation check to ensure that all your paperwork is correct;
- Ensure that all of your dependents have the correct documentation in place;
- Prepare a Letter of Representation outlining the strengths of your application to the Home Office, drawing attention to relevant laws in support of your case;
- Review your sponsoring business to ensure that they are compliant with Home Office guidelines