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What is a Tier 2 (Intra-Company Transfer) visa?

A Tier 2 (Intra-Company Transfer) visa is for existing employees of a multinational employer who need to be transferred to a UK branch, for training purposes or to fill a specific vacancy either on a long term basis or for frequent short visits.

You cannot use this route if you are an employee of an overseas employer that is not linked by common ownership or control to the UK branch.

There are 2 sub-categories of the Tier 2 (Intra-Company Transfer) visa category:

  • Long Term Staff: if you have been working for your organisation overseas for at least 12 months directly prior to your transfer and are being transferred to a skilled job in the UK. This is for a period of up to a maximum of 5 years. There are more flexible rules for high earners.
  • Graduate Trainee: if you are a recent graduate recruit being transferred to a UK branch of your organisation for the purpose of training. This route must not be used to fill long-term posts. You must be coming to the UK for a maximum period of 12 months as part of a structured graduate training programme with clearly defined progression towards a managerial or specialist role within your organisation.

What criteria must I meet to be eligible for a Tier 2 (Intra-Company Transfer – Long Term Staff) visa?

All of the following criteria must be met in order to successfully qualify for a Tier 2 (Intra-Company Transfer – Long Term Staff) visa:

  • You must have worked for your company overseas for at least 12 months, unless they’re going to pay you £73,900 or more a year to work in the UK
  • You must have a job offer and a Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) from an organisation that is licensed to sponsor migrants under Tier 2 of the Points-Based System as listed on the Home Office’s Register of Sponsors
  • The job must be skilled to at least Regulated Qualifications Framework (RQF) Level 6, or be a creative sector occupation skilled to at least RQF Level 4
  • You must be paid the appropriate salary rate for the job. You’ll usually need to be paid at least £41,500 per year or the ‘appropriate rate’ for the job you’re offered - whichever is higher
  • You must have £945 in your bank account for 90 days before you apply to prove you can support yourself. You do not need to evidence this if you have a fully approved (‘A-rated’) sponsor who can certify your maintenance

What criteria must I meet to be eligible for a Tier 2 (Intra-Company Transfer – Graduate Trainee) visa?

All of the following criteria must be met in order to successfully qualify for a Tier 2 (Intra-Company Transfer – Graduate Trainee) visa:

  • You need to be a recent graduate with at least 3 months of experience with your employer overseas
  • You must have a job offer and a Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) from an organisation that is licensed to sponsor migrants under Tier 2 of the Points-Based System as listed on the Home Office’s Register of Sponsors
  • The job must be skilled to at least Regulated Qualifications Framework (RQF) Level 6, or be a creative sector occupation skilled to at least RQF Level 4
  • You must be paid the appropriate salary rate for the job. You’ll usually need to be paid at least £23,000 per year or the ‘appropriate rate’ for the job you’re offered - whichever is higher
  • You must have £945 in your bank account for 90 days before you apply to prove you can support yourself. You do not need to evidence this if you have a fully approved (‘A-rated’) sponsor who can certify your maintenance

Is there an annual limit on the number of individuals who can apply for a Tier 2 (Intra-Company Transfer) visa?

There is no annual limit of Certificates of Sponsorship (CoS) available to sponsors under Tier 2 (Intra-Company Transfer).

Is the Resident Labour Market Test (RLMT) required for a Tier 2 (Intra-Company Transfer) visa?

There is no requirement for the Resident Labour Market Test (RLMT) to be conducted for a Tier 2 (Intra-Company Transfer) visa.

How long is a Tier 2 (Intra-Company Transfer) visa valid for?

The maximum amount of stay in the UK for each type of Tier 2 (Intra-Company Transfer) visa is:

  • Long Term Staff (if the gross annual salary package is less than £120,000 a year): 5 years
  • Long Term Staff (if the gross annual salary package is more than £120,000 a year): 9 years
  • Graduate Trainee: 12 months

Can I apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) as a Tier 2 (Intra-Company Transfer) visa holder?

No, the Tier 2 (Intra-Company Transfer) visa route does not provide the opportunity to apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) in the UK.

How long will my Tier 2 (Intra-Company Transfer) visa application take to process – outside of the UK?

Typically, a decision is made within 15 working days.

However, if you pay for the Priority Visa Service which is £220, your application will be placed at the front of the queue for priority processing and most people get a decision within 5 working days.

If you pay for the Super Priority Visa Service which is £956, your application can be processed within 24 hours (subject to availability in the country of application submission).

How long will my Tier 2 (Intra-Company Transfer) visa application take to process – inside of the UK?

If you apply from within the UK, the application can take 8 weeks to process.

However, if you pay for the Priority Visa Service which is £500, your application will be placed at the front of the queue for priority processing and most people get a decision within 10 working days.

If you pay for the Super Priority Visa Service which is £800, your application can be processed by the next working day.

Why use Setfords for Tier 2 (Intra-Company Transfer) visa matters?

  • Expert legal advice specific to your matter
  • Excellent technical knowledge of all aspects of Tier 2 (Intra-Company Transfer) visa applications
  • Extensive experience in adding all overseas linked entities to sponsor licences to facilitate intra-company transfers to the UK from all offices globally
  • Extensive experience in adding all UK linked branches to sponsor licences to facilitate intra-company transfers within all offices in the UK
  • Cost effective service with upfront fixed fees so that clients know what to expect
  • Being able to contact your lawyer out of office hours
  • Unwavering commitment to delivering excellent client care
  • Meticulous preparation of all paperwork and supporting documentation to expedite the approval process

We are happy to answer your enquiry by email or on the telephone and can do so outside office hours if you prefer. To receive more information, please complete the form below or call our enquiries team on 0330 058 4011.

Lawyer spotlight: Nicola Anne Wilkins

Consultant Solicitor - Business and Personal UK Immigration Law

Quotes from previous clients

“Nicola assisted me twice with my Tier 2 work visa applications for the UK. The first time, applying from abroad, and the second time, extending my visa from within the UK. In both situations, Nicola demonstrated excellent knowledge and professionalism. Nicola's strong attention to detail and patience throughout the entirety of the application processes were highly appreciated. I would highly recommend working with Nicola in relation to UK immigration law services”.

“We had the good fortune of finding and engaging Nicola to help us with two Tier 2 visa applications in the past year. Having come from a terrible experience with another firm which led to the unnecessary (and traumatic) loss of one of our colleagues, we were nervous about the process. We needn't have worried. Nicola was calm, confident, more than competent, and communicated clearly and very timely at each key milestone during the process. I'm delighted to report that the immigration process went extremely smoothly, not only once, but twice. I have no hesitation in sharing my recommendation, and we will certainly be working with Nicola again”.

“I had the opportunity to work with Nicola during my work visa application process. It was a truly remarkable experience. Nicola is very friendly and approachable, and her knowledge and expertise on UK immigration law, and her attention to detail on the policy guidelines is highly commendable. For any legal advice in future, I will definitely contact Nicola and will also recommend Nicola to all of my family, friends and colleagues”.

To receive more information, please complete the form below or telephone Nicola on direct line 020 8103 2006.