On 1 July 2021, the Home Office introduced a new Graduate visa route for the UK. This route is for those overseas students who have completed a qualifying course from a recognised UK university and will allow them to live and work in the UK for at least two years. There are a number of eligibility criteria and these include the applicant already being in the UK and holding a Student visa and also having successfully completed a qualifying degree course from a recognised UK university.
There are a number of advantages for employers with the introduction of this new route. Employers may employ Graduate visa holders in the UK without needing to obtain a Home Office Sponsor Licence and go through the comprehensive sponsor licensing criteria. However, once the applicant has been in the UK for a period of two years, then subject to meeting the qualifying criteria at the time of application, they may be able to switch rom within the UK to a Skilled Worker visa in order to continue their ability to work in the UK but at that stage, they will need to be working for a Home Office licensed employer. Many businesses will welcome the introduction of this new visa route although arguably, it is simply a replacement of a similar route which the Home Office previously had in place and which was called the Tier 1 (Post Study) visa. The Home Office position is that UK employers should now be able to hire the brightest graduates and talent from overseas.
For advice on this or any other immigration matter, please do not hesitate to contact Partner and Head of Immigration, Sohan Sidhu by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by telephone on 01284 763333