U.K. Immigration: Tier 1 and Tier 2 visas: What Will Happen After 6 of April 2011?

Earlier this month, the U.K. government announced new requirements for those wishing to live and work in the U.K. under the Tier 1 and Tier 2 categories of the points-based system. The new rules will come into effective on 6 April 2011, and those applying on or after that date will have to meet the new criteria. However, those who applied for leave to enter or remain under Tier 1 or Tier 2 category prior to 6 April 2011 will have their applications considered under the old rules regardless of the date of a decision on their applications.

Tier 1 Visa Changes

Without a doubt, the most significant change to the U.K. immigration rules is the abolition of Tier 1 (General) and Tier 1 (Post Study Work) categories which were hugely popular amongst well educated young professionals wishing to gain work experience and further their professional careers in the U.K.

The out-of-country Tier 1 route was closed on 23 December 2010, and as of 6 April 2011 in-country switching into the Tier 1 (G) or Tier 1 (PSW) will no longer be an option for migrants.

The good news is that there will be transitional arrangements in place, which will allow those already in the U.K. under the Tier 1 (G)/HSMP category to extend their leave. However, the threshold for extensions will be raised to 100 points for those who were required to score 95 points when they were originally granted their Tier 1 (G) leave.

Migrants with an existing leave under the Tier 1 (PSW) category or its predecessor categories and those in Tier 4 will not be able to switch into Tier 1 (G), but will be permitted to switch into Tier 2 (General). The allocation of a CoS for the purpose of such a switching application will not count toward the annual limit in 2011/12. Furthermore, those switching from Tier 1 (PSW) category who have been in the post for six months or more will not be subject to the Resident Labour Market Test.

Tier 2 Visa Changes

According to the new criteria, a U.K.-based company will be able to sponsor only migrants in graduate-level positions. The applicants will have to meet a higher salary threshold and will have to prove competence in the English language to level B1.

These new requirements will not apply to Tier 2 migrants or work permit holders who were granted leave to enter or remain before 6 April 2011 or those wishing to work for a different employer. All changes of employers will be subject to the Resident Labour Market Test.

Similarly, all migrants with an existing leave under Tier 2 Intra Company Transfer won’t be affected by the new rules.

Indefinite Leave to Remain (SETTLEMENT) Visas

On the 23 November 2010, the Home Secretary set out the government’s intention to restrict settlement and to end the link between temporary migration for work or study and staying in the U.K. permanently. The U.K. government is planning further reforms and will be tightening the settlement rules from April 2011. Applicants interested in applying for ILR later this year are advised to follow the news regularly to avoid any disappointments.

Read More at Anglotopia


  1. avatarshaishav says

    I am in UK now on TIER 5 VISA.Can i apply for TIER 1 at any later date?can you guide?

    • avatar says

      No, you cannot. You would have to leave the UK and apply for a Tier 1 Visa. You would get points for UK experience but there is no way to transition from Tier 5 to Tier 1.

      • avatarROBIN ANTONY says

        hi i am doing my bachelor of information technology in london. i reached here in london on march 4 th before this new rule came. my course will be completed only on 2013. so can i able to apply for pswv after completeing my course as i reached here before april 2011

        • avatar says

          At the moment there is no indication that those who commenced their course before the announcement regarding the closure of the Tier 1 PSW will be able to switch after April 2012. Having said that, transitional arangements might be introduced at the later date.

          Migra & Co

  2. avatarwaqas says

    I am doing Masters in UK under Tier4 and will complete my degree on September 2011, can i still apply under tier1 (PSW) after getting my degree?

    • avatarDaniel says

      Dear Sir,
      I came in UK in feb 2011, I have finished my PGD diploma and will complete my Top up on 31march 2012 from University of Wales, will I be able to apply for PSW

  3. avatar says

    my wife is working as a care nurse with 2 tier visa in uk but unfortunatly she is a diploma nurse,so if having any problam face when we are applying for renew her visa.

  4. avatarFloyd says

    I am currently living in Londn on a PSW that is valid till November this year. Will I be able to switch to a Tier 1 General visa a little later?

    • avatar says

      Hi Floyd,

      I am afraid you will not be able to switch to Tier 1 G after 5 April. Only those already in the UK under the Tier 1 General category will be able to extend their visas. You will be able to switch to Tier 2 General or other non PBS categories you might qualifty under.

  5. avatarricha says


    I am currently on a student visa (tier 4)and my result is out and I got a masters diploma can i still apply for PSW

  6. avatarSRIMA says

    hello there i am a doctor currently on tier 2 visa till 2012 december. Is it possible to convert to tier 1 visa. I qualify for the points
    Dr. Phalle

  7. avatarElan says

    Most of the information is correct however if an applicant who secured their Tier 1 General under the minimum of 75 + 20 points will need to show the same points and applicants who secured 80 + 20 points only need to demonstrate the minimum 100 points.

  8. avatarLaura says

    Hi Jackie & Jonathan,

    I’m under a Tier 1 PSW Visa since October of last year and I am working for more than a year now (it was first an internship and now I’m in a temporary position) but I have been offered a permanent position in the same company.
    Could you please advise what will be the best way to obtain the Tier 2 Visa?, and also, what if the employer does not have a license as sponsor?
    Many thanks for your help.

    • avatar says

      Hi Laura,

      Firstly, it will be vital to establish whether your role is considered as a graduate level position and assess your prospective salary. Once it is confirmed that you qualify under the Tier 2 General category you will be able to move to the next step.

      Your sponsors will have to obtain a licence from the UKBA before they will be able to request a Certificate of Sponsorship which will be later assigned to you as part of the application process.

      I suggets you contact us next week to discuss it over the phone at your convenience.

      Best Regards,
      Migra & Co

  9. avatarHitesh Pahuja says

    I am here in UK under Tier2 visa. Here are few queries

    Can I change my job and join some new employer?
    Can I apply for Tier 1 means Tier 2 to Tier 1 in near future?
    Can I join a permanent job in UK?

    Please help,


  10. avatarChanchal says

    HI. I am still in india. and want to go to UK for study in Accouting n finance course. what are the prospects for the course over there. with regard to get job there. in short i want to know is it benificial to go to UK. Hoping for quick response as my IELTS(7.0 Band) is expiring on 27 june.

  11. avatarGigi says

    What if I have EU citisenship will i still have to go through the same visa requirements? Thank you in advance

  12. avatarvijay pujar says


    I hold a Tier-1 G visa since Dec 2010 until Nov 2012. I am still in india and haven’t entered UK yet.

    1) I believe I will need minimum 100 points to file for an extension after Nov 2012, right ?
    2) Further, What is the revised salary structure to gain 45 points ?
    3)How early do i need to apply for an extension before my visa is expiring before Nov 2012 ?

    Thanks in advance


  13. avatarAbraham says

    Hi ya,

    I am currently under PSW and planning to switch over to Tier 2. Will I have to go back to my home country to apply?

  14. avatarNiyoni says

    I am currently on Tier 2 intra company transfer visa since last 3 months. Can I apply for Tier 1. Or is there any other suitable visa I can apply for in order to work as employee in UK.

  15. avatarMichell says

    Do you think immigration will re-look into the Tier One for 2011/2012? Do you know if there is any talk about the reappearance of Tier One/Highly Skilled in time to come?

  16. avatarDeb says

    I’ve been reading through the new visa requirements, but I could use some clarification. As a self-employed life coach and voice over actor, are there any visa options open to me or have they now been closed? I’m a US citizen.

    Thank you very much,

  17. avatarDeb says

    I have one more question, too:
    My grandfather was born in England, but I’m from the US, not a Commonwealth country, so I cannot apply for a visa with an ancestry connection, correct?

    Thank you.

    • avatar says

      Hi Deb,

      Unfortunately, the Ancestry route is only available to citizens of the Commonwealth countries i.e. Canadians, Australians, NZ, South Africans, etc. As such you will not qualify under this particular immigration category.

  18. avatarMaiuran says


    I am doing my BA (Hons) in Visual effects at UK. I arrived at 2008. Now I am at Tier4 visa My course is going to end at 2012. I am eligible to get PSW visa under the new changes?

    Pls help

  19. avatarkarthik says


    I am currently working on a Tier 2 visa, and am a software professional. Can I transfer my visa to Tier 1 as I meet the criteria for the points.


  20. avatarshakeel says

    HI, I have tier1 Visa valid till Feb 2012. I am in US and plaaning to move UK. My Question is can I get Tier1 extension for two years so that I can apply for PR later point of time?. Note: I have not been to UK since I got Tier1 3 years Visa.Appreciate your help


  21. avatarkrish says

    HI, I am considering an oppurtunity with theLondon office of my current employer . Salary level is about GBP 70000 p.a.
    I understand I will come via the ICT route. Will I be eligible for settlement under current rules?

    • avatar says

      Hi Krish,

      Unfortunately, Tier 2 ICT category no longer leads to settlement. As such any time spent in the UK under this category will not count towards the required five years of residence under the settlement rules. You might with to consider applying under the Tier 2 General category which still leads to permanent residence.

      All the best.


  22. avatarKaela says


    I received my PSW in Aril 2011 and gained permanent full time employment in June 2011. I’m not clear on the procedure after my PSW runs out. Is sponsorship my only option?
    A friend mentioned some other points based option, but I’m not sure about it.


    • avatar says

      Hi Keala,

      You might be able to switch to Tier 2 General category, however, everything will depend on whether your position is considered a graduate level and your sponsor’s willingness to support your application.

      There are not other categories under the PBS you can apply under apart from Tier 1 Entrepreneur or Investor.

      Good luck!


  23. avatarPriya Agarwal says


    I am in London on Tier 2 ICT visa valid till next year. Is it possible for me to change my employer/job and continue on the same visa ? Or I’ll again require sponsorship from my new employer. Also I would be getting married in October and my fiance is in UK on Tier 1 visa. So is it possible for me to change my visa to Tier 1 dependent after marriage and then apply for a new job? Its really important for me to leave my current job. Please help !


  24. avatarKhalid Khan says

    Dear Sir/Madam,

    I am currently on TIER1 PSW visa. My PSW will be eneded on December 2012. I am currently working as an office manager with an insurance broking firm. I want to switch it into Tier2 General.
    Here are my quueries:
    1. My employer is ready to sponsor me. My question is, when should my employer apply for certificate of sponsorship?
    2. What is the process of applying for certificate of sponsorship?
    3. When should i apply?
    4. What should be the minimum salary for my job?—what is the requiremnt of minimum wage to qualify for TIER2 GENERAL.

    I will be waiting for ur prompt response.

    Kind Regards,
    K. Khan

  25. avatarshreya says

    Hi there!

    I commenced a masters degree in Edinburgh in Sept 2010. I was to graduate in Nov, 2011. However, due to a medical ailment I had to take an interruption of studies. I am now due to complete my degree on 01 April, 2012 and would be graduating in July, 2012.

    Since I enrolled into the 2010-2011 session and had to postpone graduation due to medical reasons..would I still be able to apply for the PSW in July, 2011 on the receipt of my degree?


  26. avatarRajni says


    I am currently on PSW visa till December 2012 and it cannot be extended further but my partner is on HSMP visa which expires on March 2013 and he is planning on getting further extension. We are living together since April 2008 and I would like to switch my visa to his dependent. Can I do it from UK or will have to go back to India to make an application?

    Do we have to get married to get the visa? My partner is going through a divorce now and we wont be able to get married till divorce goes through? Also my partners wife came and stayed here for 6 months as her dependent in 2006/07 ? Will it be a problem for my dependent visa??

    I would really appreciate your suggestions…



  27. avatarKarla Loarca says

    Hi, I’ve just finished my MBA in London and I’m allowed to stay here until the end of December under the Student Visa. I would like to know if I am outside of the UK and get an offer with a sponsorship I can apply to get Tier 2 or if I need to stay in the UK to do so.

    Looking forward to hearing from you.

  28. avatarNabil says


    I am currently doing my master degree and im on (Tier-4 general).
    however I will be awarded the degree in June 2012 which means that I cant apply for Tier-1 PSW anymore.

    My question is if it is still possible to apply for Tier-2 while im in the Uk or will i have to leave the country?

    I have been employed for the same company for the last 8 months but as part time, will this period be counted for me in the points based assessment or it is irrelevant?


  29. avatarChathuranga says


    my tier 2 visa(intra company transfer) valid till July 2012 which was granted for 1 year (Aug 2011).If my employer wants to extend my job role what are the steps I should follow.Will it be possible to apply for visa extension while I am in UK .(currently in UK)


  30. avatarAnjum says

    Hello, My grandfather was in the british army for 7years. He passed away years ago. Can apply for a visa with an ancestry connection?? I have seen the SET(0) visa but no quite sure. Also, I am from south africa

  31. avatarKelbi says

    Hi, I need a serious help. I am here as a tier 2 and i will be able to apply for the indefinite in September 2012 but some people said to me that “I will be unable to apply for indefinite after April 2012″……i cant understand anything ….. Rummer says that “Governments is stopping people for applying indefinite after April 2012″…………..
    Hope to get reply soon………HELP!!!

    • avatarHusain says

      Hi Kelbi,

      You are eligible to apply for ILR once you complete your 5 years stay. rule change won’t affect you. It will affect to people who got tier 2 visa after Feb 2011.
      I hope this will help you :)



      • avatargur singh says

        Dear sir
        i am work permit holder .my work permit valid from 10th nov 2008 to 10 nov 2013.. what i came 1 month late.. my worries is that still i can apply ILR RESIDENCY . if not but i have to do .thanks need guide…

  32. avatarprincess says

    Hi there, can some one please guide me i wanted to move to uk on dependent visa is it possible as i have heard that dependent visas are no longer available for uk? my fiance is in uk living for atleast 5 years now can he bring me to uk on dependent visa? plzzz help i am worried else what are some other options?

  33. avatarMaree says

    Hi there,

    I am currently living in the UK on the Youth Mobility Scheme visa which expires in May 2012. My company is sponsoring me to stay under Tier 2 General Visa and I have spoken to the UK Home office to get some advice. They weren´t able to give me official advise but gave me the impression that I could make the application from another country other than my home country. I want to avoid traveling back to Australia if I can make the application from within Europe.

    Also, do you know if I have to wait for my current visa to expire before applying for the new one.


  34. avatarLavanya says

    Hi everyone
    I am holding a tier-2 ICT visa and am not interested to apply for ILR/PR after 5years. My query is am I eligible to stay with a tier-2 visa beyond 5years if so kindly let me know for how many years?


  35. avatarShubha says

    My husband is on a tier2 visa and my daughter and I have dependent visas. The visas are valid until August 2012. My husband will be made redundant end Jan and we understand you have to leave the UK within two months after that date. As the redundancy is due to change in business ownership, and the payout is generous we have no cash-flow issues. We would like to stay until the end of our daughters school year in July. She is in an independent school year 4 and we neither need nor have recourse to public funds. What can we do to make this a less abrupt move for the child? Thanks in advance for any advice!

  36. avatarCeyhun Cecen says

    I’m considering applying for settlement in the UK.
    – Came to UK in July 2007 on a work permit (as being subject to intra company transfer)
    – Switched to Tier 2 (ICT) in July 2011 (as the work permit expired)

    I’d appreciate if you could let me know whether I qualify for settlement or not. Thanks.

  37. avatarDevlina says


    I am in a very strange situation here.

    My soon-to-be married fiancee has a Tier 1 (General) visa and has been in London since 2006.
    I am an employee of a global IT firm and till last year was based in Germany on a work permit. Now I am back in India for the wedding, and would be sent to UK on a Tier 2 visa by my company.
    My question is, can I change from a Tier 2 to a Tier 1 (general) dependent visa from within the UK? In case I need to return back to India to file for a dependent visa, are there any visa guidelines that I need to wait for “x” number of months to file a new visa? Pls advise! Thanks!

  38. avatarshizz says

    I have one quarry. I finished my masters degree in 2006 from Bradford university after that I didn’t apply for SEGS and now i am in Bahrain doing job in telecom company. My question is that can I eligible for TIER 1 visa (PSW) can I apply for that? if yes how can I apply for that

  39. avatarArun says

    Hi i am currently on Tier 2 General from unrestricted COS…If my company shuts down and can i get another job if they provide me a new licence…Do i need to go through all the process again or can i work till my first licence expires

  40. avatarAsh says


    I am on Tier 1 extension. Please see my case as below.

    Date on Tier 1 General Visa – 21st Sept 2008
    Date entered UK – 13 Nov 2008
    Tier 1 general extension – 21 Sept 2011 till Sept 2013

    My question is would I be eligible for a ILR (Indefinite settlement after the 5 year period) or should I apply for another Tier 1 extension again in sept 2013 before applying for ILR?

  41. avatarCheryl says


    I previously had a UK Tier 1 general visa that expired in Aug 2011. I left the UK to return to my home country before my visa expired. Now I am considering moving back to the UK and wondering if it would be possible for me to apply to have my Tier 1 general visa extended even though it has already expired. Would I be able to apply outside of the UK, or will I have to travel to the UK for the extension?

  42. avatarHusain says

    Hi Jackie & Jonathan,

    I am on tier 2 [general] visa. I want to apply for my wife’s visa. As she is outside UK, I will fill application for VAF10. There is a question on the form regarding certificate of sponsorship[CoS]. Does my employer need to apply for new Cos for her or I can use old one?

    Many thanks & Regards,


  43. avatarMelissa says


    I have been in the UK for 5 years this September. I was on a old school Student Visa (replaced by the Tier 4) for 3 years. After this expired I opted for the Tier 1 PSW, however, it is set to expire on the 26 August 2012.

    Two questions: 1. Am I able to extend this Visa for up to another 2 years? 2. If the option for extending this Visa does not exist, can I switch into the Tier 1 General category? Otherwise, can I apply for a Visa which allows me to stay in the UK given the fact that my partner is a British national and we have been together for over 4 years and living together for the past 2 years?


  44. avatarFred says

    Hello there!
    I’ve just got my Tier 2 General visa. Under the current provision, I am eligible to apply for settlement after 5 years, however, if the government introduces new rules whereby Tier 2 holders will no longer qualify for settlement, then do you think it is going to affect my eligibility for settlement? Or it will only apply for new Tier 2 applicants who applied on or after the date when this new rule is introduced? I am wondering if the general principle of non-retroactivity of law will apply in this case? Thank you

  45. avatarAMIT says

    I got UK Tier 1 visa on 10th january, 2008 but i landed here in UK on 20th April 2008. when applying for ILR which date is going to be used and why?

    Thanks in advance

  46. avatartapas chatterjee says

    I am moving to the UK on a tier 2 general visa as a doctor in neurosurgery.,my visa is for one year ,AT the end of that year can I get an extension and does it have to be at the same level [clinical fellow in neurosurgery] or can I get an extension as a registrar in neurosurgery.Thanks in advance
    Tapas Chatterjee

  47. avatar says


    I am applying for Tier 1 extension. Please see my case as below.

    Date on Tier 1 General Visa – 15-04-2009,india
    Date entered UK – 21-06-2009

    My question is would I be eligible for a ILR (Indefinite settlement after the 5 year period) or should I apply for another Tier 1 extension again in 2014 before applying for ILR?


  48. avatarRaina says

    I have Tier 1 (General) UK Visa which was granted on 15th April (Start Date) and is due to expire on the 15 April 2012 (Expiry Date).

    Although I meet the requirements for the extension, I can’t provide the required documents to prove my complete earnings right now. The reason being delay in payment due to company facing problems. I was suppose to get paid before 31st of March 2012 for a eight months freelance contract, which forms a large part of my earnings. Due to some problem the company could not pay me last month , and will be able to make the payment in the next 3 months.

    I do understand that I need to leave UK before my visa expires which is by the mid of this month, So, I am all set to leave for my home country which is India. But, want to clarify, would I be able to apply for my the Tier 1 extension from India? Also, Do I need to apply for the extension within a certain time period after the visa expires?

    Thank you for your time and consideration.

  49. avatarlaning inderaningsih says

    My son is on PSW visa expiring on Aug9,2012. He is a graduate trainee and from feb 2012 till Augu4 2012 is placed in Spore ( the same company). He plans to take up a permanent position with the same company in UK. The company is willing to give him a cerificate of sponsorship but was informed that he has to apply the Tier 2 visa from the UK. Can he apply the tier 2 visa from spore ( where he is placed for six months and he also holds a working and resident pass in spore ) ? Does he have to make the application to Tier 2 visa from UK? Can he do it from Spore? And when would be the best time for him to make the visa Tier 2 application? Thank you so much for your information

  50. avatarDRG says


    I was on a Tier2ICT with my company in UK from Feb 2010 onwards and the visa is valid until Jan 2013. However i got transferred to India in June 2011.
    I have been asked to go to UK again and join office for another project. Do i need to apply again for a 3 year Tier2 ICT Visa or will my old Visa be valid ( as it is the same employer throughout )


  51. avatarsaranyasri says

    Now i am working in UK under tier 2 visa(intra company transfer) valid till April 2013,i want to extend my working visa because my employer wants to extend my job role what are the steps I should follow.Will it be possible to apply for visa extension while I am in UK .(currently in UK)

  52. avatarthrilochana says

    I am looking forward for doing my mba in uk…i have applied for universities in may 2012…after my complition of course can i continue to stay there doing a job relevant or irrelevant to wat i have studied?…pls help

    • avatarbalaji says

      Hi thrilochana,
      i read ur question…after completing ur studies u can apply for job related to ur studies but at the moment uk hime office changed the rules for immigration. Student coming to uk after april2012 cannot stay after completing studies unless any company or person is ready to sponsor for him/her. So after completing studies u can stay for 4 months only and its ur talent to get a job in that short period. This is the condition in uk at the moment.

  53. avatarRavindra says

    Hello ,
    I am due to apply for my ILR in August 2012.But the company doesnt want to support me as it thinks I may leave them for a new employer ionce I get my ILR. Thus I am not getting the required employee letter from them.Can I use the salary letter they gave me when I applied for my current leave to remain as the required proof .Please advice me.
    Thanks and Reagrds

  54. avatarisi says

    I have been on Tier 2 since 14th of September 2011 and prior to that i was on Tier 1 which was awarded 31st July 2010. Is it possible to switch back to my initial Tier 1 i had before the extension due 31 July 2012???

  55. avatarKim says

    Hi, I am in the Uk on a fiance visa. We were married at the end of May, I sent my passport off to have name changed and still waiting to receive it back. My fiance visa expires in two and a half weeks. I recently found out I am pregnant. I am worried I will not be able to apply for my marriage visa in time. Will I have to leave the country if I do send the application in before my expiration date?

    please help

  56. avatarpratham says

    Hello, urgent help needed. I am applying for Tier 2 visa soon i have all the necessary document, but i dont have the original copy of IELTS test report form.. So can i apply with the xerox copy to the British high commission?

  57. avatarAinsleigh says


    I am from South Africa and am coming to study my MA Acting in London later this year.

    I plan on applying for a Tier 1 (Exceptional Talent) visa after I have completed my training.

    What are my chances of getting this visa as an actress?

    Ta x

  58. avatarDinesh says

    I have tier 2 intercompany transfer visa. i have lived here for 2 years and planning for another 2. If my son goes to university after completion of 3 years of my stay wheather he will be international student?

  59. avatarsrinu says

    i have tier 1- 3 years visa untraveled near to expire , can i extend my visa by any means in case i want to travel now , any one plz help me