Tier 2 to ILR

Switching from Tier 2 to ILR

Switching from Tier 2 to ILR (indefinite leave to remain) is an ordinary legal matter that our firm deals with regularly. Here we discuss how it is possible to switch from this visa type to get the status of indefinite leave to remain, which is the same as a permanent residence in the UK and outline the Tier 2 to ILR requirements needed when pursuing this UK immigration switch.

Tier 2 to ILR Requirements

Tier 2 General Visa (work permit) holders can apply for ILR (permanent residency) after holding the Tier 2 work visa for five years. There is a difference between Tier 2 (general) migrants and Tier 2 inter-company transferees.

Tier 2 (general) work permit migrants are those who apply for permission to enter or permission to remain in this country based on the fact that they have applied for a job, have met the criteria for the job, and their employer has applied for and obtained a certificate of sponsorship to employ them.

Tier 2 (general) migrants are non-UK nationals and non-settled persons here, desirous of working and living in the UK, which after 31st December 2020 will include EU / EEA and Swiss nationals. The employer assigns to them a certificate of sponsorship after obtaining a sponsorship licence, and the prospective work permit holder then applies for the appropriate Tier2 work visa to come to the UK with their dependent family, or if already here and able to switch, applies to remain here with their dependent family in this category, from another category, such as a tier 4 student for example.

Tier 2 ICT to ILR

Tier 2 ICT visa (inter-company transfer) holders cannot at present apply for permanent residence after a period of 5 years in this category. The visa is for those employed abroad in a subsidiary company which has a presence in the UK and is related to the company abroad. The UK branch can be a wholly-owned subsidiary of the foreign parent company, which may own the UK subsidiary through shareholding, or there may be a connection between the two branches through common directorship. A connection must be shown between the two companies.

There must also be a good reason why the prospective inter-company transferee is to be transferred to the UK to fill a post in the UK subsidiary. However, after five years in this capacity, the foreign national will have to leave the UK and cannot convert to permanent residence.

The 12 months cooling – off period

By the same token, if the employment is for, say two years, the inter-company transferee can’t switch to a Tier 2 (general) work permit in order to stay a further three years before applying for ILR unless they can show an annual salary of at least £159,500 per annum when they will then be able to switch. Anything less than that would require them to leave the UK for 12 months before applying to return under a Tier 2 (General) visa.

The new skilled work permit rules

The new rules for Tier 4 students that will come into force as of 5th October 2020 (new rules as regards skilled workers) will cater for the situation after the end of the Brexit transitional period on 31st December 2020. The UK Government have said the new rules will abolish the requirement of the 12-month cooling – off period, thus enabling a Tier 2 inter-company transferee to switch to Tier 2 (general) work permit visa.

Why instruct Gulbenkian Andonian for your Tier 2 to ILR switch?

When pursuing such an immigration switch, you may be thinking about how to make the process as smooth and as easy as possible. This is where our team of expert immigration lawyers in London can help you by making your experience as hassle-free as possible. After nearly four decades of handling such immigration queries, we have built a reputation as being one of the best immigration law firms in London, one that has now been ranked as Top Tier in the Legal 500 five years in a row. Our immigration team will give your case the right care and attention it needs and will take your case forward and handle it with the utmost professionalism keeping you informed of its progress every step of the way. 

Business Immigration

Whatever the size or complexity of your business Gulbenkian Andonian immigration lawyers in London can advise on all matters of immigration, our team of specialist solicitors can help you find the most effective immigration solution to aid your company.

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Ask our Expert Legal Team

At Gulbenkian Andonian, we pride ourselves on “Excellence, Experience and Efficiency”. With over 35 years of experience on your side, our team of London based lawyers and solicitors have a wealth of experience advising individuals, families and businesses of all sizes to find clarity on UK law.

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