The scale-up visa
The Scale Up visa launched on the 22 August 2022 and allows individuals to come to the UK if they have a job offer for a high skilled role from a scale-up business.
This route will give individuals 2 years leave to remain in the UK and if desired, the ability to extend their stay for an additional 3 years. After 5 continuous years, they can apply for indefinite leave to remain, but cannot be outside of the UK for more than 180 days per year in order to do so.
The main difference between the scale-up visa and the existing skilled worker visa is that with a scale-up visa, it is possible to move to a new job or employer after the first 6 months as sponsorship is no longer needed. However, the salary requirement for this visa is higher.
To be eligible for this visa, applicants must:
- Hold a confirmed job offer to work for an approved scale-up business for six months or more;
- A certificate of sponsorship;
- The job must be one on the list of eligible occupations;
- Have a salary of at least £33,000 or £10.10 p/h or ging rate (whichever is higher); and
- Prove their knowledge of English (unless this has already been completed)
You can apply for this visa up to 3 months before the start day of the role and this can be submitted online. As part of the process an individual will have to prove their identity either by using the UK immigration ID app or having fingerprints and photographs taken at a Visa Application Centre. If applicable, partners and children can also come to the UK so long as there is suitable evidence of the relationship, and they are able to pay the visa application fee at the same rate as the main applicant. It will take about 3 weeks to receive a decision if you’re outside of the UK (and about 8 weeks if inside UK).
There are several costs which will need to be considered before applying for the visa:
- £715 for the application;
- £624 yearly for the Immigration Health Surcharge; and
- £1,270 to support yourself on arrival in the UK
As mentioned above, the job offer must come from an approved UK employer in order to successfully apply for this visa. The employer will be shown on the list of approved UK employers where “Scale-Up worker” will be listed in the table.
In the 3 years prior to being approved by the Home Office, employers must show that:
- They have grown by 20% on average each year in employment or turnover; and
- Had a least 10 employees at the start of the 3 year period
If you would more information about this visa or any other visa options into the UK, please contact the team on [email protected]