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Work Permits 2019

Work Permits, Visas and Immigration

Many roles in UK industry are highly skilled and require a technical skill set which can learnt and experienced as you develop and grow your career.

Life Sciences, for example is a truly international industry with operations around the globe, but critically with people doing similar highly technical roles in every continent.  English is typically the main business language  too, so if you are a great communicator in English, both in written and spoken communication, with experience and qualifications to support your technical acumen, you could find yourself working anywhere in the world.

If you are considering working in the UK or Europe, you will require specific immigration conditions to be met, and you are likely to be required to hold a visa or work permit before you travel to the UK or Europe.  It is illegal for companies to employ candidates who do not have the legal right to work in the country, so this step must be considered first.

Some companies are able to offer sponsorship where they will support you and apply for your visa on your behalf.  It will be tied to that employer if you are successful, and as a result, you will not be able to move to another employer without a new sponsorship application being made by a new company.  This process can be complicated and expensive, and requires expert knowledge, which means few companies offer this as a service, so whilst this option is available, we recommend that you do not rely on this if you are looking to work in the UK or Europe, and consider other options – more information can be found here.

We are expert consultants who specialise in finding the right candidate for the right role, at the right company.  Our search is often global, and as such we work with candidates around the world, many of whom are working under a specific work permit or visa.  Here are some examples of commonly held visas used by candidates we support;

Tier 1: Highly Skilled Migrant Visa (general)
A points based visa which is offered to people who have a experience or skill set that is highly sought after.  On application, points are awarded based on a range of subjects such as English Language skills, qualifications, age, prior UK experience, current financial status.  It is recommended that you visit to assess your eligibility.

Tier 2: Sponsorship
As mentioned above, some employers offer a sponsorship route where they take care of your visa status which imparts specific responsibilities on them.  This route fixes the visa  between the employer and you, meaning you are not able to change company once in the UK or Europe.

Spousal Visa
Dependants and / or Spouses of people with existing right to work and or live in the UK can apply for a visa.  You will need to be able to show evidence of either your intent to marry in the next 6 months, or that you are already married which would normally include a Marriage Certificate.

Ancestry Visa
This route is open to those who have had at least one grandparent who was born in the UK, and can offer a route into the country for up to 5 years.  You will need to be able to have and show evidence of your relationship with your grandparent, as well as evidence that they were born in the UK.
This list is an example of the most commonly used visas our candidates have or are using to work in the UK.  We recommend taking advice from someone competent to provide it on the topic, to assess which visa would be right for you.

EEA nationals
Membership of the European Union provides a legal right for all residents of EU countries to live and work in other member states, such as the UK.  This entitlement is call the right of residence, which gives an initial right to stay in the UK for three months.  To stay longer, you must be able to demonstrate that you are a ‘Qualified Person’, or someone that is an EU national who is staying in the UK, for example, as a job seeker, a worker, a student, or someone that is self sufficient by which they are able to fully support themselves financially.

For further information about work permits, and working in the UK or EU, visit, or for non-EEA/EU nationals, further information can be found at