Skilled Worker Visa

Skilled Worker Visa


The Skilled Worker Visa is open to individuals of all nationalities (except British and Irish) who have an offer of an eligible skilled job in the UK from a Home Office-approved sponsor. The route can lead to settlement and applicants can be joined by dependent partners and children.

In order to secure a Skilled Worker Visa you will need to be sponsored to do a specific job, which meets certain skill and salary requirements, by an employer that has been licensed by the Home Office.

Requirements for a Skilled Worker Visa

In order to qualify for a Skilled Worker Visa, you will need to satisfy UK Visas and Immigration that:

  • You are aged 18 or over;
  • You have a valid Certificate of Sponsorship for the job you are planning to do;
  • Your job offer is a genuine vacancy;
  • Your sponsor has paid any required Immigration Skills Charge;
  • Your job is at an appropriate skill level;
  • You are competent in the English language to at least CEFR Level B1 (equivalent to IELTS 4.0);
  • You will be paid a salary which equals or exceeds both a general salary threshold and the ‘going rate’ for the occupation;
  • You have enough money to support yourself without relying on public funds;
  • You have provided a criminal record certificate, if required; and
  • You have provided a valid TB certificate, if required.

How much it costs

When you apply for a Skilled Worker visa, you’ll need to have enough money to:

  • pay the application fee - the standard fee ranges from £610 to £1,408 depending on your circumstances
  • pay the healthcare surcharge - this is usually £624 per year
  • support yourself when you arrive in the UK - you’ll usually need to have at least £1,270 available (unless you’re exempt)

You’ll pay a lower application fee if your job is on the shortage occupation list.


You’re applying to come to the UK from Argentina for 2 years on a Skilled Worker visa.

Your job is not in a shortage occupation so your visa will cost £610, plus £624 for each year of your stay for the healthcare surcharge. This means you’ll pay a total of £1,858 when you apply for your visa.

You’ll also need to prove you have £1,270 available to support yourself in the UK if your employer cannot cover these costs.

Application fees

If you’re applying from outside the UK, the standard fee depends on whether you’ll be in the UK for:

  • up to 3 years - £610 per person
  • more than 3 years - £1,220 per person

If you’re applying from inside the UK to extend, switch or update your visa, the standard fee depends on whether you’ll be in the UK for:

  • up to 3 years - £704 per person
  • more than 3 years - £1,408 per person

If your job is on the shortage occupation list

You and your family will pay a lower application fee if your job is on the shortage occupation list.

The fee for each person applying is:

  • £464 if you’re staying for up to 3 years
  • £928 if you’re staying for more than 3 years

The fee is the same whether you’re applying from inside or outside the UK.

If you’re from an eligible country

Your application fee will be automatically reduced by £55 if you’re from one of the following countries:

Austria, Belgium, Croatia, Republic of Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, North Macedonia, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden or Turkey.

If your job is on the shortage occupation list, you’ll get this reduction as well as paying a lower fee.

This reduction only applies to your visa application. Your partner and children will still need to pay the full application fee.

Healthcare surcharge

You’ll also have to pay the healthcare surcharge for each year of your stay - this is usually £624 per year.

Money to support yourself

You must have at least £1,270 in your bank account to show you can support yourself in the UK.

You will need to have had the money available for at least 28 days in a row. Day 28 must be within 31 days of applying for this visa.

You’ll usually need to show proof of this when you apply, unless either:

  • you’ve been in the UK with a valid visa for at least 12 months
  • your employer can cover your costs during your first month in the UK, up to £1,270

Your partner and children will also need to prove they can support themselves while they’re in the UK.

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