Switching from Student Visa to Skilled Worker Visa in the UK

If you're a student in the UK and you're considering transitioning to a Skilled Worker visa, you can switch to this visa category. Skilled Worker visa allows you to work and live in the UK based on your skills and employment prospects.

Eligibility Criteria

Before you embark on your journey to switch from a student visa to a Skilled Worker visa, make sure you meet the following key eligibility requirements:

  1. Job Eligibility: Your current or prospective job must meet the eligibility requirements for the Skilled Worker visa.

2. English Language Proficiency: If you have completed your studies in the UK, you automatically satisfy the English language criteria. This means you should have a degree-level academic qualification that was taught in English. This can be a bachelor’s degree, master’s degree, or PhD.

Your Job

To be eligible for a Skilled Worker visa, your job must meet the following criteria:

a) Job Eligibility: Ensure that your occupation is eligible for this visa. You can check if your job is eligible by finding its 4-digit occupation code and referring to the official list of eligible jobs.

b) Employer Approval: You must work for a UK employer that has been approved by the Home Office.

c) Minimum Salary: You will need to be paid at least the minimum salary for the type of work you'll be doing. The minimum salary varies, and you must meet whichever of the following is the highest:

  • £26,200 per year
  • £10.75 per hour
  • The 'going rate' for your specific type of work

Application Fees

When you apply to switch to a Skilled Worker visa, there are certain fees you'll need to pay:

  • Visa Application Fee: The standard visa application fee can range from £719 to £1,500 depending on your specific circumstances.
  • Healthcare Surcharge: You'll also need to pay the healthcare surcharge for each year of your stay. Be sure to check the current amount, as it is subject to change. Currently the fee is £624 per year, but it is going to double in January 2024.
  • Biometric Information: You will need to provide your biometric information, which includes fingerprints and a photograph. There is no additional fee for this.

Proving Your Identity and Providing Supporting Documents

As part of your application process, you'll need to prove your identity. The method you use depends on your nationality and the type of passport you hold. You will either:

  • Visit a UK Visa and Citizenship Application Services (UKVCAS) Service Point: Here, you'll provide your biometric information to obtain a biometric residence permit.
  • Use the 'UK Immigration: ID Check' App: If eligible, you can use this app to scan your identity document and create or sign in to your UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) account.

Switching from a student visa to a Skilled Worker visa can open up exciting career opportunities in the UK. Ensure that you meet all the requirements, gather the necessary documents, and follow the application process diligently to increase your chances of a successful switch.

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Ruslan Kosarenko

Ruslan Kosarenko

Senior Partner