How Many Hours Can I Work on a Skilled Worker Visa UK?

How Many Hours Can I Work on a Skilled Worker Visa UK?

Workers can come to the UK on a Skilled Worker Visa with a sponsor. They can bring dependants such as a partner or children on the visa making it a good choice for families wanting to move to and work in the UK.

All forms of UK-based work are considered under this licence. This includes unpaid activities that are going to be carried out by anyone from the EU, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, and Switzerland.

For a business or organisation to employ workers from outside the UK they must hold a Sponsor Licence.

The Sponsor Licence essentially gives them the power to hire anyone they need from non-UK countries. This means getting skilled workers who want to come and live and work in the UK.

The skilled worker visa has now replaced the Tier 2 (general) work visa.

A Skilled Worker Visa is the main way for a non-UK worker to get a working visa in the UK.

To apply for a Skilled Worker Visa you must already have applied for and have confirmed employment for when you arrive in the UK.

The visa is only applicable for the time you are in the UK working in the same role with the same employer as the sponsor.

Applications for a Skilled Worker Visa are processed by the Home Office.

What qualifies you for a Skilled Worker Visa?

To be eligible for a Skilled Worker Visa the following must apply;

  1. Knowledge of English – you must be able to speak, read and write English, which you will usually be asked to prove. Your English should be at level B1 on the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) scale.
  2. Work for an employer that has been approved by the Home Office.
  3. Have a ‘Certificate of Sponsorship’ – this will be given to you by your employer and should entail what job role you have been offered in the UK.

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What is IELTS?

The IELTS stands for the International Language Testing System. This is an English language proficiency test that is approved by the Home Office to help UK visa applicants give evidence of their English language capabilities.

Basically, IELTS is a Secure English Language Test (SELT).

Which IELTS test you should take depends on what type of UK visa you are getting and the requirements it comes with. It could also depend on if you are coming to study, what requirements does your school have?

Whatever your visa requirements you will need to take either the ‘IELTS for UKVI’ test or the ‘IELTS Life Skills’ test.

For IELTS for UKVI, there are two different modules that you can do. These are Academic or General Training modules and both can be used as proof of English proficiency for studying, working or migrating to the UK.

If you need to know more about the IELTS read our articles ‘What Is the Minimum IELTS Score for UK Skilled Worker Visa?’ and ‘Can I Get UK Skilled Worker Visa Without IELTS?’

Who can sponsor a Skilled Worker Visa in the UK?

To be able to sponsor somebody for their Skilled Worker Visa you cannot have any of the following:

  1. Any unspent criminal convictions. These can be for immigration offences and other offences such as fraud and money laundering.
  2. If you have lost a sponsorship licence in the last year.

You should also make sure that:

  • The job you are recruiting for is suitable to be sponsored.
  • You know what type of licence you should be applying for based on what type of position you are hiring for.
  • You have a system place such as an HR department that can make sure your business is meeting all the requirements needed to maintain sponsorship.

If you have a history of losing a Sponsor Licence in the past 12 months and/or your organisation also has a history of not complying with the requirements for the Sponsorship Licence, this will be known by the Home Office and you will be rejected as a sponsor.

As the Sponsor Licence is held by an organisation and not an individual person, the staff will also be checked to make sure the organisation is suitable. See our list of things nobody from your business should do:

  • Spend most of their time outside of the UK.
  • Be subject to a bankruptcy restriction.
  • Have a history of non-compliance with Sponsorship requirements.
  • Have broken the law.
  • Have been reported to UKVI.
  • Have failed to pay VAT or other excise duty.
  • Be a contractor or consultant contracted for a specific project.
  • Have unspent criminal convictions for immigration offences or certain other crimes, such as fraud or money laundering.
  • Had a Sponsor Licence revoked in the last 12 months.
What Are the Requirements for UK Student Visa?

How Many Hours Can I Work on a Skilled Worker Visa UK?

For a Skilled Worker Visa, there is not minimum or maximum amount of hours that you can work at your sponsored job. You instead have to make sure you meet the minimum salary requirement.

This means that if someone is offering you a job where you will need a Skilled Worker Visa then you will need to make sure that you are working enough hours to meet the minimum salary required for your job role on this type of visa.

Salary requirements are an important part of a Skilled Worker Visa. If your salary is too low your application could get rejected. The lowest salary will be worked out to be equivalent to whichever is higher;

For example, if the going rate of your job is usually £29,000 but you are going to be making £27,500, your application will be rejected. You would be failing to meet the requirement for the Skilled Worker Visa.

This is one of the things that will qualify your sponsor to be able to sponsor you as well.

Do double-check the exact amount that will be the minimum for your specific job role as there is a list of shortage occupations where this may vary more.

Can I have a second job on a Skilled Worker Visa?

So as not to distract from your main sponsored job, the reason you find yourself in the UK to begin with, there is a cap on the maximum working hours allowed at a second job.

This cap is at 20 hours so if you want to work a second job with more hours than this you will have to reconsider the type of visa you are in the UK with.

To work an unsponsored second job up to 20 hours paid you will not need to report this to the home office.

If the work you do is voluntary then this cap does not apply. It is recommended that even if your work is voluntary you do not let it overly detract from your sponsored job as this could affect you if you are wanting to apply for indefinite leave to remain when the time comes.

The rules for a secondary job, unsponsored on a Skilled Worker Visa are as follows:

  • It must be 20 hours or under (unless voluntary).
  • The role must either have the same occupation code as your sponsored job or be from the shortage occupation list.
  • It should not interfere with your sponsored jobs working hours.
  • It should be outside of the hours you work for your sponsored job.
What Is the Minimum Salary for Tier 2 Visa UK?

Synergy Immigration Solutions

To find out more about Synergy Immigration Solutions and our visa services, visit our website here.

To contact us, call us on 020 315 05359, email or fill in our online contact form here.

Read our articles on our blog here to find out more about start-up visas, student visas, sole representative visas and innovator visas.

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