How To Apply United Kingdom Scale-up Visa 2024: The United Kingdom has opened applications for Nigerian and other foreign nationals to apply for the 2024 scale-up visa, effective from August 22.
According to a statement issued by the British government, the development would see growing businesses attract the right talent to enhance productivity across the economy as it is believed that scaling up is an important phase for high-growth businesses to continue growing and drive their international competitiveness.
The exercise is expected to see talent across various fields such as science, engineering, and programming as it brings in sought-after expertise and skills, enterprises that can boost their innovation and productivity and in turn keep contributing to the UK’s economy.
What they are saying
Kevin Foster, Minister for Safe and Legal Migration said, “Rapidly growing businesses, like small enterprises, tech, and financial services, need the right level of support to go to the next level. Through our Scale-up visa, we’re enabling businesses to focus on their growth and innovation by giving them more freedom to bring in the diverse skills and experience they need, making them more attractive on an international stage.
“By supporting our high-growth tech, financial services, and small businesses, we are ensuring the UK remains a global hub for emerging technologies and innovation while enhancing productivity across the economy – creating jobs, growth, and prosperity across Britain.”
Irene Graham OBE, CEO of the ScaleUp Institute said, “The ScaleUp Institute welcomes the launch of the Scale-up visa. This is something we have recommended since our inception and should provide a much-needed fast-track service to enable local growth companies to access the talent they need more quickly.
“Scaleups add over £1 trillion a year and more than 3 million jobs to the UK economy, and are present in every community, hiring people from at home and abroad, as they drive growth into their local areas and beyond.
“The visa should help with the skills demands. We look forward to continuing to work with the government as this service evolves to ensure it fully addresses scaling business needs and works effectively.”
YOU MAY ALSO LIKE: Top 6 Online Teaching Jobs Websites Paying $35 Per Hour
What you should know about UK scale-up visa
- A Scale-up Worker visa (or Scale-up business) allows you to come to the UK to do an eligible job for a fast-growing UK business
- Unlike other sponsored visas, the Scale-up visa allows businesses to employ high-skilled individuals who will receive 2 years’ leave to remain in the UK without requiring further sponsorship or permission beyond the first 6 months.
- Notably, eligible businesses will attract highly skilled talent including scientists, engineers, programmers, software developers, research and development professionals, economists, architects, technicians, financial and investment advisers
- Companies, including small businesses and those in the tech and financial services sectors, that have achieved growth of 20% or more in either employment or turnover year-on-year for at least 3 years and employed a minimum of 10 people at the start of the 3 years will be eligible to sponsor talented individuals through the Scale-up visa.
UK Scale-up Visa Application Guide.
A Scale-up Worker visa allows you to come to the UK to do an eligible job for a fast-growing UK business (sometimes called a ‘scale-up business’).
Your UK employer must meet specific eligibility criteria to sponsor scale-up workers.
If you or your family are from the EU, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland or Liechtenstein
If you or your family member started living in the UK by 31 December 2024, you may be able to apply to the free EU Settlement Scheme.
The deadline to apply was 30 June 2024 for most people. You can still apply if either:
- you have a later deadline – for example, you’re joining a family member in the UK who was living in the UK by 31 December 2024
- you have ‘reasonable grounds’ for being unable to apply by 30 June 2024 – for example, you had an illness or were the victim of domestic abuse
Otherwise you need a visa to work in the UK.
Irish citizens do not need to apply for a visa or to the EU Settlement Scheme.
UK Scale-up Visa Application Eligibility Criteria & Requirements.
To qualify for a Scale-up Worker visa, you must:
- have a confirmed job offer to work for an approved scale-up business for at least 6 months
- have a ‘certificate of sponsorship’ from your employer with information about the role you’ve been offered in the UK
- have a job offer to do a job that’s on the list of eligible occupations
- be paid a minimum salary in your new job
Knowledge of English
You must be able to speak, read, write and understand English. You’ll usually need to prove your knowledge of English when you apply.
If you’re not eligible for a Scale-up Worker visa
You may be eligible for another type of visa to work in the UK.
How long you can stay
You can stay in the UK with a Scale-up Worker visa for 2 years. You’ll need to apply to extend your visa when it expires.
If you want to stay longer in the UK
You can extend your visa as many times as you like by 3 years, as long as you still meet the eligibility requirements.
After 5 years, you may be able to apply to settle permanently in the UK (also known as ‘indefinite leave to remain’). This gives you the right to live, work and study here for as long as you like, and apply for benefits if you’re eligible.
How to apply for United Kingdom Scale-up Visa.
You must apply online.
How you apply depends on whether you’re:
- outside the UK and are coming to the UK
- inside the UK and extending your current visa
- inside the UK and switching from a different visa
If you want to change your employer during the first 6 months of working in your sponsored job, you must apply to update your visa.
You can include your partner and children in your application to stay in the UK if they are eligible.
When to apply for United Kingdom Scale-up Visa.
You can apply for a visa up to 3 months before the day you’re due to start work in the UK. This date is listed on your certificate of sponsorship.
As part of your application, you’ll need to prove your identity and provide your documents.
You may need to allow extra time if you need an appointment to do this. You’ll find out if you need one when you start your application.
Getting a decision
Once you’ve applied online, proved your identity and provided your documents, you’ll usually get a decision on your visa within:
- 3 weeks, if you’re outside the UK
- 8 weeks, if you’re inside the UK
You may be able to pay to get a faster decision. How you do this depends on whether you’re outside the UK or inside the UK.
How much does the United Kingdom Scale-up Visa costs?
You, your partner or children will each need to:
- pay the £715 application fee
- pay the healthcare surcharge for each year of your stay
- prove you have enough personal savings
What you can and cannot do when applying for the United Kingdom Scale-up Visa.
With a Scale-up Worker visa you can:
- work in your sponsored job for at least 6 months
- leave your sponsored job after 6 months
- bring your partner and children with you as your ‘dependants’, if they’re eligible
- take on additional work, including becoming self-employed
- do voluntary work
- travel abroad and return to the UK
- apply to settle permanently in the UK (also known as ‘indefinite leave to remain’) if you’ve lived in the UK for 5 years and meet the other eligibility requirements
- apply for most benefits (public funds), or the State Pension
- work as a professional sportsperson, for example a sports coach
If your application is successful, you’ll get a full list of what you can and cannot do with a Scale-up Worker visa.
During the first 6 months of your stay
You cannot change employer unless you apply to update your visa.
You do not need to update your visa if you start a different, eligible job with the same employer.
After 6 months
- continue working in your job
- change or stop doing your job without telling the Home Office
- be self-employed
You do not need to update your visa.
You can extend your Scale-up Worker visa without a new sponsor when your current visa expires. You must meet the earnings requirements.