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How to Get a UK Work Permit

By July 27, 2016September 23rd, 2022No Comments
How to Get a UK Work Permit

After Brexit, you may be wary of setting up shop in the UK, but we urge you to reconsider. The region is still a great option for international expansion.  If you wish to take operations internationally, it’s time to learn the basics of helping employees get a UK work permit.


With tools like International PEO and FSaaS, expanding overseas is very approachable for companies of all shapes and sizes.  If the UK is on your radar and you’re considering bringing local talent along for the ride, keep reading.

Getting a UK Work Permit

An employee can start the process of obtaining a UK work permit once they receive an official, written job offer from an employer who has a legal entity in the region.  We will discuss how you can easily establish a legal presence in the UK below if you do not already have one.

Candidates must meet the eligibility requirements and have a sponsor before applying for a UK work permit.  The certificate of sponsorship details the employer’s information and specifics about the job offered, such as the proposed salary.  Also, an employee must have a substantial amount of money in their bank account.  This proves that they can support themselves when they arrive and begin working in the UK.  Finally, there is an English proficiency requirement that the potential employee must pass.

Once all the necessary requirements are met, paperwork is submitted to immigration and hopefully, everything is approved.  An approval decision will typically take three weeks.  Employees can expect to receive their UK work permit about three months before their start date.

Individuals can come to the UK with a Tier 2 visa for a maximum of five years and 14 days, or the time given in their certificate of sponsorship plus one month, whichever is shorter.  Extensions are available for up to another five years, as long as the total stay does not exceed six years.

Beginning Operations in the UK

If you’re considering expanding operations into the UK and do not have a legal entity established, some services can help you get set up fast.  International PEO is one option for businesses that want to start operating overseas as soon as possible.  You can begin working much faster than if you try to establish a foreign subsidiary.

An International PEO allows companies to hire employees in overseas markets while remaining compliant.  It acts as your employees’ employer of record by informing you and managing monthly withholdings, income tax to employer social security contributions, local employment contracts, and much more. International PEOs administer items like payroll, supplemental insurance, and work permits as well. To learn more about obtaining a UK Employer of Record, contact us today.