Our team of experienced immigration solicitors can support your application for an Intra-company visa to enter the UK and continue to work for your current employer. Find out more here.
What is the Intra-Company Transfer Visa?
This visa allows skilled workers to enter the UK on a long-term basis to fill a skilled job vacancy; such as in IT, accountancy, teaching, or healthcare.
There are two types of Intra-Company Transfer visas including a transfer visa or a graduate trainee visa.
Intra-company Transfer Visa
You can apply for this visa if you currently work for your employer outside of the UK and are being transferred to a role in the UK. If you earn less than £73,900 you'll need to have worked for your employer outside of the UK for more than 12 months. If you earn more than £73,900 this does not apply.
Intra-company Graduate Trainee Visa
You can apply for this visa if your employer is transferring you to the UK as part of a graduate training programme for a managerial or specialist role. To apply via this route, you must have worked for your employer outside of the UK for at least 3 months immediately before the date you apply.
How long is an Intra-Company Transfer Visa valid for?
The length of time your visa is approved for will depend on your visa type and how long your employer is sponsoring you for.
Intra-company Transfer Visa - Length of stay
If you're applying for a standard Intra-company Transfer visa, you may be able to stay in the UK for up to 5 years in any 6 year period if you’re paid less than £73,900 a year. This is increased to 9 years in any 10 year period if you’re paid £73,900 a year or more.
This may be shorter if your employer has stated less on your certificate of sponsorship. In which case you'll only be granted the time given on your certificate of sponsorship plus 14 days. You can apply to extend your visa or apply for another one up to the maximum total stay. If you have already been in the UK with an Intra-company visa before your application, that time will be included in your total stay.
Intra-company Graduate Trainee Visa - Length of stay
If you're applying for an Intra-company Graduate Trainee visa, you'll be able to stay in the UK for 12 months or the time given on your certificate of sponsorship plus 14 days (whichever is shorter).
On an Intra-company Graduate Trainee visa, you cannot apply to extend your visa however you can apply for another visa from outside of the UK. You'll need to fulfill the same eligibility requirements as before, which means you'll have to work for your employer outside of the UK for at least 3 months preceding your application.
If you have already been in the UK with an Intra-company visa before your application, that time will be included in your total stay. The maximum total stay allowed for an Intra-company Graduate Trainee visa is 5 years in any 6 year period.
Eligibility requirements for Intra-Company Transfer Visa
1. You must be an existing employee of an organisation that’s been approved by the Home Office as a sponsor
You must be employed by an organisation that holds a valid sponsorship licence that has been approved by the UK Home Office. The organisation is required to register with the UK Visas and Immigration as a licensed sponsor by submitting an online application and provide a number of original documents to apply for Tier 2 Sponsorship. If your employer is not currently licensed to sponsor people to work in the UK, Masaud Solicitors can support your application for a sponsor licence if they’re eligible.
2. You need to have a valid Certificate of Sponsorship from your employer
To be eligible for an Intra-company visa you need to have a valid certificate of sponsorship from your employer. Additionally, you must apply for your visa within 3 months of getting your certificate of sponsorship. The certificate of sponsorship is an electronic record with information about the role you have been offered in the UK.
3. You have to have worked for your employer outside the UK
You must be able to prove that you have been employed with your current employer and worked for them outside of the UK. The length of your employment outside of the UK will depend on your circumstances. For example if you have an annual salary of less than £73,900 you must have been employed for at least 12 months outside of the UK before you can apply for an intra-company transfer visa. If you earn more than this, there is no minimum length of employment before you can apply. If you intend on applying via the Graduate Trainee route, the length of time is reduced to only 3 months however this must have occurred immediately before the date you apply.
4. Your job must be on the list of eligible occupations
Only certain jobs are eligible for intra-company transfer visas. This may include various engineering jobs, business and management positions and others. You must check if your job is eligible before you apply.
5. You must be paid the minimum eligible salary for your job
If you’re applying for an Intra-company Transfer visa you must be paid at least £41,500 or the ‘going rate’ for your job - whichever is higher. If you’re applying for an Intra-company Graduate Trainee visa you must be paid at least £23,000 or 70% of the ‘going rate’ for your job - whichever is higher. Each occupation code has its own annual going rate.
Which documents are required for an Intra-company Visa application?
Tier 2 applicants must provide several documents with their application, these include:
Current passport and/or other travel documents
A separate passport photograph
Evidence of your employment and that they hold a valid sponsorship licence approved by the Home Office
Certificate of Sponsorship
Proof that you have worked for your current employer outside of the UK for the required length of time depending on your visa
Proof of your annual salary
Proof that you can meet the maintenance funds requirements for their visa, such as bank statements (unless your sponsor can guarantee they will support your maintenance).
Proof that they meet the English Languages requirements, such as qualification equivalent to a bachelor's degree or higher taught in English or English language test results.
Clear tuberculosis (TB) test result letter, if the applicant is from one of the countries on the Home Office's TB testing list
Applying for an Intra-Company Transfer Visa
Our immigration solicitors can advise you of all the necessary eligibility requirements and an extensive list of documentation required to support your application. We work with various businesses to apply for regular intra-company transfer visas. These can be straightforward applications providing all the eligibility and evidence requirements are met. Speak to a solicitor today to find out how we can help you and your business continue to work effectively in the UK and abroad.