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The Skilled Worker visa has replaced the Tier 2 (General) visa under the UK’s new single points-based immigration system. The Skilled Worker visa will apply to EEA nationals wanting to come to the UK to work after 1 January 2021, and for non-EEA nationals who apply for entry clearance or permission to stay in the UK on or after 1 December 2020. The new visa is broadly similar to the old visa, although there are some changes aimed at making the process more straightforward for both sponsors and applicants alike.

A skilled worker is someone who will be working in a job role in the UK that is deemed to have a skill level of RQF3 or above, (equivalent to A level), as set out under Appendix Skilled Occupations to the Immigration Rules (applicable from 1 December 2020). Jobs are classified in terms of their skill level and content, where workers will not need to hold a formal qualification.

After 1 January 2021, except for Irish citizens, all EU nationals coming to work in the UK will need a visa in advance, unless they are eligible to apply for either settled or pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme. To be eligible under the scheme, an individual will need to show they arrived in the UK prior to 11pm 31 December 2020 and apply by 30 June 2021.

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