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4 UK visa options for Nigerians and others, without an employee letter

4 UK visa options for Nigerians and others, without an employee letter

The UK has made some immigration changes and recently, visa fees have risen. The Immigration Health Surcharge (IHS) experienced a significant 66% increase earlier this year, leading to an annual amount of £1,035.12 for adults.

Additionally, as of October 4, 2023, adjustments have been made to visa application fees, with a 15% increase for Work and Visitor Visas, a 20% rise for Family Visas, Settlement, and E-citizenship categories, and a notable 35% surge in fees for Student Visas.

However, for individuals possessing the appropriate level of skills and training, there remain numerous visa pathways accessible for those who do not have a job offer.

The Global Talent visa in the UK is for leaders in academia, arts, and digital technology. Eligibility requires excellence in one of these fields, with an age minimum of 18. An endorsement or an eligible award is necessary for application.

The visa allows up to 5 years, renewable for 1 to 5 years each time, potentially leading to indefinite leave to remain after 3 or 5 years. Application involves online submission based on location, with proof of identity and required documents.

The High Potential Individual (HPI) visa allows recent graduates from eligible global universities to work or seek employment in the UK without a job offer. Lasting 2 years (or 3 for PhD holders), it cannot be extended, but applicants may switch to other visa categories like the Skilled Worker visa. Partners and children can join, and the application process takes 3 weeks for overseas applicants and 8 weeks for those within the UK.

Costs include application fees, healthcare surcharge, and proof of savings. Activities permitted under the HPI visa include working, job searching, self-employment, living with dependents, voluntary work, and international travel. However, recipients cannot claim most benefits, work as professional sportspersons, or apply for permanent settlements in the UK. Overall, the HPI visa offers a concise pathway for qualified individuals to contribute to the UK workforce and explore career opportunities.

Foreigners working for businesses with UK branches or subsidiaries can explore visa options through the Global Mobility route. This provides choices for individuals employed by companies with established UK branches and those responsible for establishing a UK branch for their current employer.

The Global Business Mobility route consolidates business visas like the Intra-Company Transfer and Sole Representative visas. Tailored for overseas businesses, it allows staff transfers and temporary work assignments in the UK.

Categories include Senior or Specialist Worker (lasting 2 years, or 3 for PhD holders), Graduate Trainee, UK Expansion Worker, Service Supplier, and Secondment Worker. Eligibility criteria, permitted activities, and application processes vary among these categories, covering workers outside the UK. The route aims to streamline business visas, offering a cohesive framework for temporary assignments and staff transfers.

Finally, the Self-Sponsorship Visa in the UK enables individuals to establish their businesses, securing work visas without a minimum investment requirement. Suited for entrepreneurs, the process involves setting up a business, obtaining a sponsor license, and applying for the Self-Sponsored Skilled Worker visa.

Benefits include establishing a business, securing a work visa, and potentially leading to permanent residency and British citizenship. The visa’s duration varies, and costs depend on the application type and circumstances. Additional considerations include the option to bring family members, no salary requirement, and the Authorising Officer’s departure not affecting the visa.