Tier 2 General and Intra-Company Transfer (ICT)
 

The Tier 2 (General) and Tier 2 Intra-Company Transfer (ICT) visa categories of the Point-Based System are the routes for non-EEA Migrants who wish to gain permission to work in the UK. These migrants can only be sponsored by an organisation that holds a Sponsorship Licence in the relevant category.


The Tier 2 (General) visa category caters to workers who have a job offer from a UK-based employer that cannot be filled by a settled worker. This category also includes workers coming to the UK to fill shortage occupations.


Key points under this visa route:
•    You must be at least 16 years of age on the date on which the application is decided
•    You must have a job offer and an assigned Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) from a company that is a licensed sponsor in the UK
•   You must not own more than 10% of your sponsor’s shares if the sponsor is a limited company, unless you are applying under the ICT category or your CoS shows that your gross annual salary will be at least £159,600
•    The maximum period you can remain in the UK is 6 years
•   The Tier 2 (General) visa leads to settlement in the UK upon completion of a 5-year qualifying period
•    Change of employment is allowed, subject to your obtaining a new Tier 2 (General) visa with a new sponsor
•    The CoS certificate must confirm that the job is at RQF level 6 as stated in the codes of practice; or the job is a creative sector occupation skilled to RQF level 4; or the job is at RQF level 4 and appears on the list of shortage occupations
•    The requirements of the Resident Labour Market Test (RLMT) vary depending on the type of job and the level of gross annual salary that you are offered
•    You must meet English Language and Maintenance requirements when applying under Tier 2 (General) category


The Tier 2 Intra-Company Transfer (ICT) visa category is for existing employees of a multinational organisation who are to be transferred by that organisation to a UK entity which is linked to the organisation by common ownership or control. The Tier 2 ICT visa category consists of two sub-categories: Long-Term Staff and Graduate Trainee.


Key points for Tier 2 ICT (Long-Term Staff):
•    You must be at least 16 years of age on the date on which the application is decided
•    You must have a job offer and an assigned “unrestricted” Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) from a company that is a licensed sponsor in the UK
•    The maximum period of stay under the Tier 2 ICT category is 5 years. Your visa can be extended up to 9 years if you are earning £120,000 or more
•    There is no English Language requirement, however the Maintenance requirement must be met
•    The CoS certificate must confirm that the job is at RQF level 6 as stated in the codes of practice, or that the job is a creative sector occupation skilled to RQF level 4
•    You must have worked for the organisation outside of the UK for at least 12 months, unless your gross annual salary in the UK will be £73,900 or higher
•    Your prospective gross annual salary in the UK must be at least £41,500

Our regulated advisers have had many years of experience assisting applicants and their family members with their relocation to the UK as well as extension and indefinite leave to remain (ILR) applications under the Tier 2 (General) and Tier 2 ICT routes. 

We will provide you with tailored advice to your specific case scenario to ensure that the Immigration Requirements are met. Please do not hesitate to contact us should you require any assistance with your application.

The differences between Tier 2 General and Tier 2 ICT visa categories have been outlined in our latest article which can be found here. In this article we have also addressed whether it is possible to switch from Tier 2 ICT to Tier 2 General and/or extend Tier 2 ICT visa after 5 years.


Please note that requirements may vary from case to case based on the nuances of your situation, and the information on this page is not intended to replace legal advice.

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Joyce Cheung

Senior Associate

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Yana Tyler

Senior

Immigration Consultant

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