Do New UK Visas Require Sponsorship?
The United Kingdom is introducing new visas for international workers who wish to migrate to the country for employment purposes. These visas include High Potential Individual visa,Scale-Up visa, and Global Business Mobility Visa. They will allow UK businesses to hire top international talents worldwide. These new routes promise to be fast and smooth pathways to the UK for skilled individuals in various fields.
This is part of a plan to make the UK a global innovation hub, making it easier for top talents to move to the country. Also, this plan aims to improve the UK’s economy suffering from a shortage of skills following Brexit and the COVID effects. Here’s what each visa entails:
1. High Potential Individual visa
The high potential individual (HPI) visa welcomes graduates of top global universities. To qualify, applicants must have graduated 5 years before applying. It’s an individual visa, so beneficiaries don’t need a job offer from a UK company to enter the country.
2. Scale-Up visa
The Scale-Up Visa is for exceptional international talents with job offers from scale-up firms. Companies would qualify as scale-ups if they grew by no less than 20% per year in personnel count or turnover for the past three years with at least 10 workers in the first year.
3. Global Business Mobility Visa
The Global Business Mobility visa will let UK companies send in workers from their foreign branches or other partnering overseas organisations. Before applying, beneficiaries must have worked for the organisation for at least 3 months. The application for this visa is currently open.
Do The Visas Require Sponsorship?
The majority of UK work visas require a sponsor licence for businesses employing workers from outside the country. Popular routes like the Health or Care Worker visa, Skilled Worker visa, Charity Worker visa, Seasonal Worker visa, and Charity Worker visa all require sponsorship.
Of the above three new visas, a sponsorship licence is required for the Global Business Mobility and Scale-Up visas. The High Potential Individual visa, however, doesn’t require sponsorship. This means applicants don’t need a UK firm to sponsor them. They can apply for the visa on their own.
For the Scale-up visa, you will need a certificate of sponsorship from a UK employer. Your employers can issue you a certificate of sponsorship after obtaining a sponsor licence.
UK employers with A-rated licences are all listed on the Register of licensed sponsors. You can check this register to verify if your employer has a sponsor licence and whether they’re eligible to sponsor your job category.
After getting your certificate of sponsorship from your UK employer, you must apply for your visa within 3 months. This certificate is digital, not a hard copy, and will contain your employer’s sponsorship licence number among other details.
An employer must also meet the scale-up program criteria to qualify as a sponsor for the scale-up visa. This means they must have had at least 20% yearly growth in either revenue or staff during the past three years and at least ten workers.
The Global Business Mobility or GBM visa is an upgrade to the existing Intra-company Graduate Trainee visa. The Intra-company Graduate Trainee visa required sponsorship, and this hasn’t changed.
Your employer will obtain a’ provisional’ rating instead of an A-rated license if you’re entering the UK as an expansion worker under the GBM route. They are allowed to issue 1 certificate of sponsorship with a provisional-rated licence. But they can upgrade to an A-rated licence if you obtain your visa.
Applications for the GBM route began on April 11. If you have an Intra-company Graduate Trainee visa certificate of sponsorship issued between February 11 and April 11, then you don’t need a new certificate.
Since the High Potential Individual route doesn’t require sponsorship, proof of funds is one of the important requirements.
Applications for the High Potential Individual and Scale-up visas are expected to open around May-August. You can contact UK immigration lawyers today for guidance and more information about these new work visas. Keep in mind that these are new routes, and information about them is still largely sketchy. But working with immigration lawyers will give you clearer insights into how to obtain the visas in a timely manner.