Studying and Working in the UK
Working and Studying in the United Kingdom
Can I stay in the UK to work after I have finished studying?
This depends on whether you meet the requirements for any of the schemes that the UK Government operates.
At the moment, the schemes that are most significant for students who have finished their studies are:
- Tier 1 (Post-Study Work) for those who have obtained a UK degree, a Postgraduate Certificate in Education or a Professional Graduate Diploma in Education (or an HND from a Scottish institution). This replaced the International Graduates Scheme (IGS) and the Fresh Talent: Working in Scotland Scheme from 30 June 2008. If you have immigration permission under the IGS now, you can apply for an extra year under Tier 1 (Post-Study Work), and it does not matter what type of qualification you have. The Government has announced that Tier 1 (Post-Study Work) will be abolished in April 2012. Until then, it is still possible to apply under this scheme both in the UK and outside the UK.
- Tier 2 for jobs where no one in the resident labour market can be recruited, and occupations where there is a shortage of qualified workers. This replaced work permits and some other work routes from 27 November 2008.
Working in the UK after your studies
What is happening with Tier 1 (Post-Study Work)?
This work route will close in April 2012. We do not yet have the details of what will replace it. However, it looks as if you will need to meet most of the requirements of Tier 2, except for the Resident Labour Market Test, or of a new student entrepreneur route which does not yet exist. This means that a Tier 2 employer will not have to show that the job was advertised and no UK or EEA nationals could do it. However, the job will have to be a graduate level job with a specified minimum wage, and the employer must have a Tier 2 licence. There will be no specific provision for you if you need to complete a period of work in order to qualify in a profession. You should speak to your college or university if you think this is likely to cause you problems.
The UK Border Agency has published new Tier 1 (Post-Study Work) guidance which came into force on 6 April 2011. The application fees increase on this date to £474 for entry clearance (a visa) outside the UK, £594 for a postal application in the UK and £918 for a premium application in the UK. Make sure you use the most recent application form on the UK Border Agency's website.
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