Can I Apply for a Work Visa in the UK Without a Job?
Whether you’re a UK employer looking to employ an overseas worker or if you’re an overseas worker looking for employment in the UK, there are a few things you need to know before getting the ball rolling.
One of the most frequently asked questions about applying for a UK work visa is whether or not you need a job offer before applying. In more cases, the answer is yes, but there are exceptions. Plus it can’t be a job offer form anywhere, they must meet certain requirements and have a sponsorship licence.
Here at Synergy Immigration Solutions, we are experts in UK work visas and we’re here to help you and shed some light on job offers and UK visas.
Why work in the UK?
There are so many different reasons why the UK is appealing to overseas workers, from the Great British culture to the endless opportunities, there is something for almost everyone. The opportunities are limitless in the UK thanks to the fully developed economy and wide variety of work available.
The only downside is narrowing down your options to decide which path you’re going to take. People come to the UK to work but fall in love with the culture, art, architecture and way of life. But first, there are a few things you need to know before applying for that all-important UK work visa.
About UK work visas
To come to the UK for work you must have a UK work visa. A visa allows you to live and work in the UK for a set time. When your visa is coming to an end, in some cases it can be renewed so you can stay longer or you might decide. You might also decide to change your visa if your circumstances are changing, or you can go back home.
To be granted a UK work visa you first must apply for one and before doing that there are certain requirements you need to meet in order to be considered and accepted. There are different types of visas to choose from depending on your circumstances and professional background, such as a skilled worker visa or health and care worker visa.
If you meet all of the necessary requirements for the visa you are applying for, then you have a pretty good chance of getting accepted as only around 1 in 20 skilled worker applications get rejected on average.
Applying for a UK work visa
Here, we look at some of the requirements needed for a UK work visa, including if you need to have a job offer before applying. In many circumstances, you will need a job offer in the UK from an employer with a sponsorship licence to apply for a work visa, but there are some exceptions.
Next, we have information about when you will need a job offer to apply for a UK work visa and when a job offer isn’t necessary. If you are unsure or if you want more information on whether or not you need a job offer, contact us at Synergy Immigration Solutions and someone will be happy to help you.
Visa routes that require a job offer
The majority of work visas in the UK require a job offer before applying in order to be considered and accepted. Some examples of the most popular work visas that fall within this category are as follows:
- Global Business Mobility- Within this category of visa there are subcategories that you can apply for such as the Senior or Specialist worker visa, Graduate Trainee visa and UK Expansion Worker visa.
- Seasonal Worker visa
- Creative Worker visa
- Charity Worker visa
Visa routes that don’t require a job offer
There are some exceptions where you won’t need a job offer to be accepted for a UK visa and here are some examples:
- British National (Overseas) visa
- Graduate visa
- Youth Mobility Scheme visa
- India Young Professionals Scheme
- Global Talent visa
- UK Ancestry visa
- High Potential Individual visa
UK visa requirements
The requirements will vary depending on the type of visa you’re applying for, but we are going to use the Skilled Worker visa as an example here of some of the things you might need before applying.
To apply for a Skilled Worker visa you must:
- Have a job offer from a UK employer that has a sponsorship licence
- The job offer must be a high-demand skilled job on the list of eligible occupations
- Meet the minimum salary requirement for the job you are being offered
- A good level of English. Applicants don’t always need an IELT for a worker visa in the U if they can prove their English knowledge another way.
A lot of people wonder about what education level is required to gain a UK work visa and this will depend on the type of job you want to do in the UK.
For example, if you want to work in education or healthcare as a teacher of medical professionals then you will need a recognised degree, but if you want to do another job in healthcare such as a carer or hospitality perhaps, you may not need such as high level of education to be accepted, but instead, you will need the right skills and experience to be given a job offer.
How to apply for a UK work visa
If you want to apply for a UK visa you can apply online for most visa types. To save time and your application from being rejected, make sure you have all the relevant documentation readily available and the means to pay for the application fee.
Your employer may pay for your visa fees but they also might not so always check this detail with your employer. These fees vary depending on which visa you’re applying for.
After you have submitted your application you will be considered based on your documentation and what you have submitted. It can take around 8 weeks or longer for your visa application to be approved so make sure you allow yourself enough time.
What happens if my visa application is rejected?
If your application is rejected, you will receive a letter with the details of whether you are able to make an appeal to have the decision overturned. If your application is rejected, it is likely because you didn’t meet the requirements of the visa application you have chosen, you didn’t provide the correct documentation or you submitted the application incorrectly.
All of your documentation will be returned to you.
What happens if my visa application is accepted?
If your application is accepted, you will receive a letter telling you so as well as the details of your visa. Every visa is different but you will then be permitted to work in the UK for the set amount of time that the visa allows.
Despite what some people think, there is no set number of working hours as part of UK work visa requirements, but you must earn the minimum salary for the job you have been offered.
How can Synergy Immigration Solutions help?
Synergy Immigration Solutions Ltd is an OISC-registered company offering a wide range of UK immigration visa services for both corporate and individual clients needing assistance with their visa issues and concerns.
We assist small to medium-sized businesses in obtaining sponsorship licences to enable them to recruit overseas talent, and we are experts in processing Skilled Workers and ICT visas. We work with clients from a wide range of sectors including IT, Education, Retail, Beauty, Mental Health, Construction, Manufacturing and Film Production.
We are experts in UK work visas and we’re here to help you. If you have a concern, question or want to know more about how we can help you, contact us today.
To conclude, do you need a job offer to apply for a work visa in the UK? In most cases, yes you will need a job offer from an organisation that has a sponsorship licence before applying for your visa. However, there are a few exceptions which have been outlined in this article. To find out more, have a look on our website.