The UK has started an immigration system that treats all applicants equally, regardless of where they come from. For recruiting anyone from outside the UK, excluding Irish citizens, you should meet certain requirements and apply for permission first. The requirements are different for each visa. You should have a sponsor licence to hire a workforce from outside the United Kingdom.
The new scheme does not apply to EEA or Swiss citizens you have already employed in the UK. EEA and Swiss citizens residing in the UK by 31 December 2020 can apply for the EU Settlement Scheme. They can apply until 30 June 2021.
Skilled Workers Route
If you desire to employ anyone from outside the UK for the Skilled Worker route, he/she is required to explain that:
- They have a job proposition from a licenced sponsor
- The job proposal is at the required skill level of RQF3 or above
- They have good proficiency in the English language
- They will be paid the going rate for the job offer or a minimum £25,600, whichever is greater
- If the job pays less than this but not less than £20,480, the applicants can still apply by ‘trading’ points on specific characteristics.
There are different rules of salary for some workers in education or health jobs, and for new entrances who are starting their careers. There is no generalized route for employers to recruit from outside the UK to offer a salary of less than £20,480.
Intra-Company Transfer Route
If you desire to transfer a worker from your overseas business to work with you in the United Kingdom, they can apply for the Intra-Company Transfer route. Applicants should be an existing worker who will take the role that meets both skills and salary thresholds.
Workers who are transferring to the UK are required to:
- be sponsored by a Home Office licenced sponsor as an Intra-Company Transfer
- have 12 months of working experience for an overseas business which is linked by ownership to UK business
- undertaking a role at the essential skill level
- be paid at the going rate or minimum £41,500 for the job, whichever is more
Permission for workers who are transferred to the UK on the Intra-Company Transfer route is temporary. Workers can be assigned multiple times to the UK, but they cannot live in the UK for a duration of more than 5 years in any 6-year period.
Workers who are paid more than £73,900 are not required to have worked overseas for 1 year, and they can stay till 9 years in any 10-year period.
Workers who are relocated to the UK as a participant of a structured graduate training programme for the time period of 1 year can apply for the Intra-Company Graduate Trainee route. All the requirements are the same except there are different rules on overseas salary and experience.
Some routes for immigration, like Global Talent, are unsponsored. You do not require a licence to hire employees with an unsponsored visa.
The Global Talent route is sketched to attract global leaders and talented individuals in humanities, science, engineering, arts and digital technology.
The Youth Mobility Scheme will help around 20,000 young people who are aged between 18 to 30 to come to the UK for work and travel every year.
EEA and Swiss citizens can use their national identity card or passport to prove that they can work in the UK till 30 June 2021.
Note: If you were already a licenced Tier 2 or Tier 5 sponsor on 30 November 2020, your licence will be transferred to the new system from 1 December 2020.
If you are not a licenced sponsor already and want to sponsor migrants, you should apply for a sponsor licence.
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