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GLOBAL BUSINESS MOBILITY VISA: UK EXPANSION WORKER

GLOBAL BUSINESS MOBILITY VISA: UK EXPANSION WORKER

The Global Business Mobility – UK Expansion Worker Visa is for senior managers and specialist employees who wish to be assigned to the UK temporarily to undertake work related to the expansion of an overseas business in the UK. Sponsors may send a maximum of 5 workers at a time.

The UK Expansion Worker route can only be used when the UK business has not yet started trading.  If the business is already trading in the UK, you should apply for a Global Business Mobility – Senior or Specialist Worker Visa instead.

The Global Business Mobility – UK Expansion Worker Visa does not lead directly to settlement in the UK.  However, you may be able to switch into another immigration route which does lead to settlement.  Applicants may be joined or accompanied by a partner and dependent children.

Requirements for a Global Business Mobility Visa: UK Expansion Worker

In order to qualify for a Global Business Mobility – UK Expansion Worker Visa, you will need to satisfy UK Visas and Immigration that:

  • You are aged 18 or over;
  • You are currently working for a business or organisation that is linked to your UK sponsor by common ownership or control;
  • You have worked outside the UK for the linked business or organisation for a cumulative period of at least 12 months, unless you are a high earner earning £73,900 per year or more or you are a Japanese national seeking to establish a UK branch or subsidiary of the linked business or organisation under the UK-Japan Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement;
  • You have a valid Certificate of Sponsorship issued by your UK sponsor for the job you are planning to do;
  • The job you are planning to do is genuine;
  • The job you are planning to do is skilled to at least RQF Level 6 (graduate equivalent);
  • Your salary will be equal to or exceed both £42,400 per year and the ‘going rate’ for the job;
  • You have enough money to support yourself without relying on public funds;
  • You have provided a valid TB certificate, if required.

The exact requirements you will need to satisfy may vary depending on your circumstances. You may want to speak to an immigration lawyer for expert advice.

To discuss your Global Business Mobility – UK Expansion Worker Visa application with one of our immigration barristers, contact our business immigration team on 0203 617 9173 or complete our enquiry form below.

Global Business Mobility Visa: UK Expansion Worker Visa Overseas Work Requirement

If you are applying for a Global Business Mobility – UK Expansion Worker Visa, your gross annual salary is less than £73,900 (based on working a maximum of 48 hours per week) and you are not a Japanese national seeking to establish a UK branch or subsidiary of the linked business or organisation under the UK-Japan Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement then you must be currently working for a business or organisation that is linked to your UK sponsor by common ownership or control and have worked outside the UK for this business or organisation for a cumulative period of at least 12 months.

The 12 months’ work outside the UK can have been accumulated over a historic period if you were continuously working for the linked business or organisation, in the UK or overseas, for at least 12 months prior to the date of application and any breaks have only been for statutory maternity, paternity, parental or shared parental leave, statutory adoption leave, sick leave, assisting with a national or international humanitarian or environmental crisis with the agreement of the sponsor group or taking part in lawful industrial action. 

If you are earning £73,900 per year or more or you are a Japanese national seeking to establish a UK branch or subsidiary of the linked business or organisation under the UK-Japan Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement then you must be currently working for a business or organisation that is linked to your UK sponsor by common ownership or control, but you do not need to have been employed overseas for any specific period of time.

Global Business Mobility Visa: UK Expansion Worker Visa Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) Requirement

In order to obtain a Global Business Mobility – UK Expansion Worker Visa you will need to have a valid Certificate of Sponsorship for the job you are planning to do.  Your Certificate of Sponsorship will need to have been issued by an employer that is authorised by the Home Office to sponsor a UK Expansion Worker.

Your sponsor must be listed as A-rated on the Home Office’s register of licensed sponsors, unless you were last granted permission as a UK Expansion Worker and are applying to continue working for the same sponsor as in your last permission or you are the Authorising Officer for the sponsor and the sponsor has a provisional rating on the Home Office’s register of licensed sponsors.

Your Certificate of Sponsorship must have been issued not more than 3 months before the date of your Global Business Mobility – UK Expansions Worker Visa application.

Your Certificate of Sponsorship must include certain mandatory information, including:

  • Details of your name, job and salary;
  • Confirmation that you have worked for your employer outside the UK for at least 12 months, unless you are a high earner earning £73,900 per year or more or you are a Japanese national seeking to establish a UK branch or subsidiary of the linked business or organisation under the UK-Japan Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement;
  • A start date which is no more than 3 months after the date of your Global Business Mobility – UK Expansion Worker Visa application;
  • Confirmation that the Certificate of Sponsorship has not been used in a previous application which was either granted or refused and has not been withdrawn by the sponsor or cancelled by the Home Office.

Genuine Job Requirement

In order to be granted a Global Business Mobility – UK Expansion Worker Visa, you will need to satisfy the Home Office that you are being sponsored to undertake a genuine job.

If there are reasonable grounds to believe that the job you are being sponsored to do does not exist, is a sham or has been created mainly so that you can apply for a Global Business Mobility – UK Expansion Worker Visa then your application will be refused.

The Home Office will also want to be satisfied that you have not entered into an arrangement whereby you will fill a temporary or permanent position with a third party who is not the sponsor, or undertake contract work which involves undertaking an ongoing routine role or providing an ongoing routine service to a third party who is not your sponsor.

Global Business Mobility Visa: UK Expansion Worker Job Skill Level Requirement 

In order to qualify for a Global Business Mobility – UK Expansion Worker Visa, the job you are being sponsored to do must be an eligible job at or above a minimum skill level.

The job you are planning to do must be skilled to at least RQF Level 6 (graduate equivalent).  You do not necessarily need to hold a degree, but the role must be equivalent to a graduate level role.

The Home Office has published a list of jobs that are eligible for a Global Business Mobility – UK Expansion Worker Visa.  The list includes the relevant occupation code, job type and related job titles.  

You will usually meet the job skill level requirement if the job you are being sponsored for is on the list.

However, your sponsor must choose an appropriate occupation code.  If the Home Office has reasonable grounds to believe that your sponsor has not chosen the most appropriate occupation code then your application for a Global Business Mobility Visa will be refused.

In assessing whether your sponsor has chosen the most appropriate occupation code, the Home Office will consider factors such as whether they have shown a genuine need for the job as described, whether you have the appropriate skills, qualifications and experience needed to do the job as described and the sponsor’s history of compliance with the immigration system.

Global Business Mobility Visa: UK Expansion Worker Salary Requirement

Employers seeking to transfer an employee under the Global Business Mobility Visa: UK Expansion Worker route must pay their skilled worker a salary which equals or exceeds both a general salary requirement and the ‘going rate’ for the occupation (as set out in the relevant occupation code mentioned above).

The general salary requirement under the Global Business Mobility Visa UK Expansion Worker route is £42,400 a year.  Therefore, in most cases an applicant for a Global Business Mobility – UK Expansion Worker Visa must be paid a salary which equals or exceeds £42,400 per year and 100% of the pro-rated going rate for the occupation, whichever is higher. 

The assessment of salary is based on guaranteed basic gross pay (up to 48 hours per week) plus allowances which are guaranteed to be paid for the duration of the employment in the UK (such as London weighting) or are paid as a mobility premium or to cover the additional cost of living in the UK.

The Home Office has published a list of going rates for eligible Global Business Mobility occupation codes.  The annual salaries stated are based on a 39-hour working week and must be pro-rated for other working patterns.

Your full weekly hours will be included when checking your salary against the going rate, even if you work more than 48 hours per week.

Immigration Skills Charge Requirement

Employers that are authorised by the Home Office to sponsor a UK Expansion Worker are not required to pay the Immigration Skills Charge.

Global Business Mobility Visa: UK Expansion Worker Visa Financial Requirement

Subject to the exemption below, you will need to have cash funds of at least £1,270 available.

You will need to have held the money for at least 28 consecutive days ending not more than 31 days before the date of your Global Business Mobility – UK Expansion Worker Visa application.

If you are applying for permission to stay and have been in the UK with permission for 12 months or more at the date of application, you will meet the financial requirement and will not need to show funds.

Global Business Mobility – UK Expansion Worker Visa English Language Requirement

UK Expansion Worker Visa applicants do not need to satisfy an English language requirement.

Switching into the Global Business Mobility Visa: UK Expansion Worker Route

If you currently have leave to remain in another immigration category, you may extend your stay by switching into the Global Business Mobility – UK Expansion Worker route unless you have, or were last granted, permission as a Visitor, Short-term student, Parent of a Child Student, Seasonal Worker, Domestic Worker in a Private Household or outside the Immigration Rules. 

Duration of a Global Business Mobility Visa: Senior or Specialist Worker Visa

If your application for a Global Business Mobility – UK Expansion Worker Visa is approved, you will be granted entry clearance for either 1 year after the start date of the job detailed in your Certificate of Sponsorship or the time given on your Certificate of Sponsorship plus 14 days, whichever is shorter.

If you want to stay longer in the UK, you will be able to apply to extend your visa for a further 12 months.  You will be able to stay in the UK for a maximum of 2 years on a UK Expansion Worker Visa.

Maximum Time in the Global Business Mobility Routes

If you have already spent time in the UK on any of the Global Mobility Routes or the former Intra-company routes then you may not be able to stay in the UK on a Global Business Mobility – UK Expansion Worker Visa for the full time period set out above.

This is because you can only stay in the UK for a maximum of 5 years in any 6 year period if you have previously spent time in any of the Global Business Mobility routes or the former Intra-company routes.

Conditions of Stay on a Global Business Mobility: UK Expansion Worker Visa

Global Business Mobility – UK Expansion Worker Visa holders are permitted to work for their sponsor in the job described on their Certificate of Sponsorship.  They may also undertake a course of study and voluntary work.  Access to public funds is not permitted.

Settlement on the Global Business Mobility Visa: UK Expansion Worker Route

The Global Business Mobility Visa: UK Expansion Worker Visa does not lead directly to settlement in the UK. However, once in the UK, you may be able to switch into another immigration route which does lead to settlement, such as the Skilled Worker route or the Start-up route when combined with the Innovator route.  You will need to satisfy the requirements of the immigration route that you wish to extend into.  Details of all the main immigration routes, including whether they lead to settlement, are available on our website.

You may also be eligible to extend your stay until you qualify for settlement on the basis of Long Residence.

Dependants of Global Business Mobility Visa: UK Expansion Worker Visa applicants

Global Business Mobility – UK Expansion Worker Visa holders can be joined or accompanied by a dependent partner over the age of 18 and dependent children under the age of 18.

Global Business Mobility Sponsor Licence Application

The Global Business Mobility routes are open to businesses of all sizes, providing they have a trading presence outside the UK and a qualifying link to a UK business.

In order to hold a Global Business Mobility sponsor licence, the UK business that will be receiving the worker must:

  • Have an existing presence in the UK;
  • Have qualifying links to an overseas business from which it will receive workers;
  • Have suitable key personnel who will be responsible for the managing the licence; and
  • Have systems in place to meet the sponsor licence duties.

Qualifying links to UK businesses are specific to the type of work assignment which is being undertaken in the UK.

In the case of a Global Business Mobility – UK Expansion Worker sponsor the UK business must provide credible evidence that it intends, and is able, to establish a new UK branch or wholly-owned subsidiary of an established overseas business. The overseas business must normally have been trading overseas for a minimum of 3 years (although there are some exceptions to this requirement).

Businesses that wish to apply for a UK Expansion Worker sponsor licence are required to have a UK footprint rather than a trading presence. This means that they should be able to provide evidence of either a UK premises or Companies House Registration, but they should not yet have begun trading in the UK.

The overseas business, on the other hand, will need to be active and trading. The Home Office will normally expect the overseas business to have traded for at least 3 years (although there are some exceptions).

The overseas business will also need to satisfy the Home Office that it is capable of successfully expanding into the UK.  It will need to provide a credible business plan for expansion and demonstrate that it can finance its expansion plans.  The Home Office will normally expect the overseas business to be a stable or growing business that has undertaken preparatory work towards expansion.

UK Expansion Worker sponsors will need to identify key personnel who will be responsible for managing the sponsor licence.  If there is no suitable settled worker in the UK to take the role of the Authorising Officer (a senior and competent person responsible for the actions of staff and representatives who use the Sponsor Management System) then, exceptionally, the rules for UK Expansion Worker sponsors allow for a Proposed Authorising Officer to be outside the UK.  In this situation the UK sponsor will be given a ‘provisional rating’ and just 1 Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) initially.  The Proposed Authorising Officer will then need to be the first worker that is sponsored.  Once the Proposed Authorising Officer is in the UK, the sponsor will be able to re-rate to an ‘A-rating’ and request additional CoS (up to 5 maximum).

If there is a suitable settled worker in the UK who can act as the Authorising Officer then there is no need to rely on this exception and the UK Expansion Worker sponsor can be awarded an ‘A-rating’ and up to 5 CoS initially. 

How Our Immigration Barristers Can Help

Our business immigration barristers are well placed to assist all types of companies and partnerships to secure UK Expansion Worker visas for their employees. Whether you are a small business or a large multinational looking to expand into the UK, our barristers are experts in the immigration options available and will guide you through the complex Home Office rules and policies.  Our business immigration barristers can also assist UK employers to obtain a UK Expansion Worker sponsor licence, maintain their licence at the highest rating and comply with their sponsor duties.

We pride ourselves on being approachable and proactive in understanding and meeting our clients’ needs. We are a highly driven team, dedicated to providing clear and reliable immigration advice to businesses as part of a professional and friendly service.

We can also assist with

  • Applications for extension of stay as a Global Business Mobility - UK Expansion Worker

    If your application for a Global Business Mobility – UK Expansion Worker Visa is approved, you will be granted entry clearance or permission to stay for either 1 year after the start date of the job detailed in your Certificate of Sponsorship, the time given on your Certificate of Sponsorship plus 14 days, the date on which you will have had continuous permission as a UK Expansion Worker totalling 2 years or the date on which you will have had cumulative permission in the Global Business Mobility routes totalling 5 years in any 6-year period, whichever is shorter.

    You will be able to extend your stay in the UK on the Global Business Mobility – UK Expansion Worker route up to a maximum period of 5 years in any 6 year period.

  • Applications for settlement as a Global Business Mobility - UK Expansion Worker

    The Global Business Mobility: UK Expansion Worker Visa does not lead to settlement in the UK. However, you may be able to switch into another immigration route which does lead to settlement.

    You may also be eligible to extend your stay until you qualify for settlement on the basis of Long Residence.

  • Fresh applications, Administrative reviews and Judicial reviews for Global Business Mobility - UK Expansion Workers

    If your application for entry clearance or leave to remain as a Global Business Mobility – UK Expansion Worker Migrant has been refused, our immigration barristers can advise on the merits of making a fresh application or challenging the decision.

    If the decision-maker failed to apply the Immigration Rules or Home Office policy correctly, we can bring Administrative Review proceedings to challenge the decision.

    If the decision to refuse your application was unlawful, unreasonable or procedurally improper, our immigration barristers can apply for Judicial Review and provide representation at Judicial Review hearings.

  • Obtaining a UK Expansion Worker Sponsor Licence

    In order to obtain a Global Business Mobility – UK Expansion Worker Visa, applicants need to be sponsored by an employer that is authorised by the Home Office to sponsor a UK Expansion Worker.

    Our business immigration barristers assist UK employers to obtain the right sponsor licence, maintain their licence at the highest rating and comply with their sponsor duties.

    Whether you require an assessment of your prospects of successfully applying for a UK Expansion Worker sponsor licence, advice on the correct company-related documentation to provide in support of a UK Expansion Worker sponsor licence application or assistance with drafting a compelling business case that will satisfy the Home Office that you meet the requirements for a UK Expansion Worker sponsor licence, our immigration barristers can manage your UK Expansion Worker sponsor licence application on your behalf.

  • Applications for Skilled Worker Visas

    The Skilled Worker Visa is open to individuals of all nationalities (except British and Irish) who have an offer of an eligible skilled job in the UK from a Home Office-approved sponsor.  The route can lead to settlement and applicants can be joined by dependent partners and children.

    In order to qualify for a Skilled Worker Visa, you will need to satisfy UK Visas and Immigration that:

    • You are aged 18 or over;
    • You have a valid Certificate of Sponsorship for the job you are planning to do;
    • Your job offer is a genuine vacancy;
    • Your sponsor has paid any required Immigration Skills Charge;
    • Your job is at an appropriate skill level;
    • You are competent in the English language to at least CEFR Level B1 (equivalent to IELTS 4.0);
    • You will be paid a salary which equals or exceeds both a general salary threshold and the ‘going rate’ for the occupation;
    • You have enough money to support yourself without relying on public funds;
    • You have provided a criminal record certificate, if required; and
    • You have provided a valid TB certificate, if required.

    The exact requirements you will need to satisfy will vary depending on your circumstances.  You may want to speak to an immigration lawyer for expert advice.

WHAT CAN WE HELP YOU WITH?

To discuss your UK Global Business Mobility - UK Expansion Worker Visa application with one of our immigration barristers, contact our business immigration team on 0203 617 9173 or complete our enquiry form.




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