Many UK businesses are growing quickly and they need flexibility in order to employ talented workers from overseas. The scale-up working visa route that was opened by the government gives these scale-up companies greater power, allowing them more freedom when it comes time for hiring new staff members.

The Scale-up Worker Visa is a great option for immigration because it allows workers to remain in the country for 2 years with limited sponsorship. Unlike other types of visas, you only need six months’ approval from your approved scale-up businesses.

Qualification of UK Scale-up Businesses

To be eligible for the new UK working visa route option, an UK employer’s company needs to be fast growing. The firm must be an eligible Scale-up business, and have fulfilled certain criteria in order for them to sponsor scale up workers. The Home Office will only approve a sponsors application if they meet 3 years criteria along with the following criteria requirements:

  • At least 10 employees at the start of the 3 Years
  • Either in Employment or turnover, should have grown of 20% on average each Year

Qualifying Requirements as a Scale-up Worker

To apply for the Scale-up Worker Visa, you must fulfil these criteria:

  • UK sponsor must be listed as a scale-up business and should be on the list of approved UK employers
  • Confirmed job offer from an approved scale-up business to work for at least 6 months
  • For this visa type, your job must be on the list of eligible professions
  • A certificate of sponsorship provided by employer
  • To work in the UK, you need to be paid at least £33K/Year or £10,10/Hour or the going rate for your profession, whichever is greater

You will have to fulfil an English language requirement unless you’ve already proved this in a previous successful visa application.

In order to maintain their legal status in South Africa, applicants will have a number of requirements that they must meet. These include fulfilling an employer maintenance obligation and maintaining certain levels for themselves as well- this includes children or Partners if applicable! For more information on how these work please speak with your consultants who can outline exact amounts whatever the case. The certificate of sponsorship must confirm this if your employer is supporting you.

What you need to know before Switching to the Scale-up Worker Visa?

There are some certain situations which makes it possible to switch to the Scale-up Worker visa from within the UK but switching is not allowed from a short-term student visa, visitor visa, parent of a child student visa, domestic worker visa or seasonal worker visa. If you’re on immigration bail or with permission to stay in the UK outside of those rules, then you will not be able to switch

If you fall in one of the above categories, you will have to leave UK and have to apply from another country.

Dependents and Spouses

You can bring your spouse or partner and children with you on the journey. If they are successful in their applications, then their visas will also expire at the same time as yours!

The Home Office defines a dependent partner or children as anyone of the following:

  • Wife, husband, wife, unmarried partner or civil
  • Children under 18 years old, including those born during your stay in the Country
  • Your child over 18 years old, if they are currently in the country as your dependent

Right to Work

You will have the opportunity to work in your sponsored job for six months.

When you leave your sponsored job after six months, there is no need to inform the Home Office. You can continue working at you sponsored job or you can find a different one.

The Scale-up Worker Visa is great for those who want to work, volunteer or start their own business. You can even study if that’s something you interest!

Being a professional sportsperson or coach is not allowed, but there are other jobs you can do.

Duration of Stay

With a Scale-up Worker Visa, it is possible to stay in the UK for two years. You can extend your scale-up visa if it expires and can stay for another three years!

The good news is that after the maximum extension of your visa, you will be able to qualify for settlement in UK.

UK Immigration Health Surcharge

You and your family will have to pay the Immigration Health Surcharge every year you apply to stay in UK.

Indefinite Leave to Remain

After living and working in the UK for five years on the scale-up working visa, you can apply to stay indefinitely.