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A Guide To The Tiers For The Point Based Visa System

A Guide To The Tiers For The Point Based Visa System

Over the next twelve months employment based immigration will undergo drastic changes. All employment based visas will be based on points. The application will not be successful if the applicant does not accumulate the requisite number of points in the category.

Visas based on employment will be separated into five separate tiers. In the first tier, the employer will not need to sponsor the foreign national. The foreign national will be able to sponsor himself/herself. An employer needs to sponsor the foreign national in the other four tiers.

Tier 1 visa will have several sub-categories. These subcategories will be:

  1. highly skilled individual;
  2. entrepreneur;
  3. investor; and
  4. post-graduate.

Like Tier 1, a Tier 2 visa will also have sub-categories. They will be:

  1. skilled worker;
  2. intra-company transfer;
  3. religious person; and
  4. sportsperson/entertainer.

The skilled worker must possess skills at NVQ Level 3. According to the Qualifications and Curriculum authority, NVQ Level 3 is defined as: Competence that involves the application of knowledge in a broad range of varied work activities performed in a wide variety of contexts, most of which are complex and non-routine. There is considerable responsibility and autonomy and control or guidance of others is often required.

Tier 3, at the moment, is suspended.

Tier 4 is applicable to students. The Home Office will start accepting applications under Tier 4 in the spring of 2009.

Tier 5 applies to youth mobility and temporary workers. The Home Office will start accepting applications under Tier 5 in the autumn of 2008.

All visa nationals wishing to come to the UK for employment will need to demonstrate a certain level of expertise in the English language. The prospective employee will need to obtain a band level 6 on the IELTS. If the prospective employee does not meet this requirement, a visa will not be granted.

Please contact our offices at 0370 1500 100 to discuss your matter with a member of the Immigration team.