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Visa Guide For International Students

So you’ve completed your studies in the UK and you’ve got the gown, cap and degree to prove it. But perhaps you’re not ready to wave goodbye to Britain’s sunny shores just yet, or maybe you have a job opportunity lined up that is too good to miss? Either way, you will need to get a new visa – but where do you start?

The first step is to determine what visa you need and whether you qualify for it. While it is imperative that you abide by advice given by the UK Council for International Student Affairs (UKCISA) and the UK Visas and Immigration websites, here’s a brief overview of the visas that might apply to you

Tier 2

This is the main visa for immigrants looking to work in the UK. You will need sponsorship from an employer or a job offer. The role must have an annual salary of £20,800 – although for some careers this is higher – and you must have had £945 in your bank account for 90 days. These visas last for a maximum of five years.

Tier 5

This Youth Mobility Scheme visa is available for people aged between 18 and 30 and for certain nationalities, namely those from Australia, Canada, Japan, Monaco, Hong Kong, South Korea, Taiwan and New Zealand. The visas lasts for 24 months but is contingent on your country of origin. For instance, graduates from Hong Kong, the Republic of Korea and Taiwan will need a certificate of sponsorship. This visa must be applied for from your home territory.

Tier 1 – Graduate entrepreneur

The graduate entrepreneur visa is geared at keeping the best international talent in the UK. If you are graduating with a Tier 4 visa and want to open a business in the UK, this may be the visa for you. Although, you need a credible business idea and an endorsement from university. Moreover, you must have a minimum of a BA degree or equivalent.

Ancestry and other options

There are a number of other visas available depending on personal circumstance and ancestry. Why not get in contact with your university’s immigration services to find out more about the options available to you?

What are sponsors?

Sponsors are essentially businesses, universities or organisations that can vouch for you on your behalf. Sponsors can come in the form of a certificate or job offer depending on the case - if you want to find out more, a list of licensed employers can be found here. If your employer is currently not registered they can do so here. It is also worth noting that securing sponsorship does not guarantee that the visa will be approved.

Importance of finding your own immigration solicitor

It is advised that all international students who want to stay in the UK find themselves a qualified immigration solicitor. In fact, the government recommends hiring one so that each individual is given a fair shot at staying and working in the country. It means that deadlines are always met, the process is simplified and you’re always aware of what’s required of you. Find one by clicking here.

Don’t forget, you can find out more information on the government’s website and with UKCISA. However, if you are still unsure of where you’re heading after university, why not sign up with us today? With vacancies from across the globe, there is nowhere your ambition can’t take you.

Disclaimer: (GradLink UK) is not responsible for any action taken as a result of the information or advice provided in this blog. Readers must seek specialist advice from lawyers or other professional immigration consultant regarding their case before taking any action.

By David Gee Published: July 03, 2017


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