Requirements and processes for a dependant skilled worker visa
The United Kingdom is a magnet of rising opportunities for global talents. Several thousands of skilled workers move to the UK every year to seek growth in work and better living conditions. According to the Home Office statistics of 2019, over 113,958 skilled workers were moving to the UK, marking an increase of 11%.
And quite naturally, along with the skilled workers, their dependents also move to the UK.
Following Brexit, there have been several changes in the UK immigration system, which every skilled worker must be acquainted with while making applications for themselves and their dependents.
This blog will cover the changes post-Brexit, requirements, and processes for a dependent skilled worker visa.
Who is permitted to apply for a Dependent skilled worker visa?
The partner and children of a Skilled Worker visa applicant can travel with them on a Dependent skilled worker visa and live and work in the UK as their ‘dependents’. But to do that, the dependents must be eligible. Once the eligibility is proven, their visa will be issued in line with the main applicant.
The dependents of the main applicant can be the following:
- Child under 18 years of age
- Husband or wife
- Civil partner
- Unmarried partner
Requirements of Dependents of Skilled Worker visa
❖ Validity requirements
Before getting to know the eligibility and suitability of the dependent applicant, it is required to understand whether the dependent’s application is valid or not.
Applications must necessarily meet all the following requirements:
- Applications’ fee and Immigration Health Charge must have been paid
- the dependent applicant must have provided the required biometrics
- the dependent applicant must have provided a valid passport or another travel document that confirms their identity and nationality.
❖ Suitability requirements
The dependent applicants must guard against falling for application refusal under the following grounds for refusal. They are divided into 5 sections:
- Defining which Rules are subject to the grounds for refusal;
- Grounds for refusal, or cancellation of, entry clearance, permission to enter and permission to stay
- Additional grounds for refusal of entry, or cancellation of entry clearance or permission, on arrival in the UK
- Additional grounds for refusal, or cancellation, of permission to stay
- Additional grounds for cancellation of entry clearance, permission to enter and permission to stay which apply to a specific route/routes.
The dependent applicant must not have breached any immigration law nor have a criminal record. If the dependent is applying from the UK (switching categories), they must not be on immigration bail.
The dependent applicants must check thoroughly the appropriate Immigration Rules for the type of application they are applying for.
❖ Eligibility requirements
- Entry clearance: The Skilled Worker dependent applicant must have been granted entry clearance prior to coming to the UK, or else the entry will be refused at the UK borders.
- Tuberculosis medical certificate: If the main applicant’s dependents (either partner or child) are coming to the UK for more than 6 months, and they have lived have been residing within a country listed in Appendix T, they must provide evidence confirming that they have undergone screening for active pulmonary tuberculosis and that such tuberculosis is not present in the applicant
- The immigration status of the main applicant: If the main applicant has secured settlement or British citizenship, the dependent applicants can still apply for permission to stay as a dependent of the following routes:
- Skilled worker
- T2 Minister of Religion
- T2 Sportsperson
- Representative of an Overseas Business
- UK Ancestry
- Global Talent
❖ Relationship requirements
The Home Office strictly assesses the relationship requirements and checks whether the main applicant and dependent applicant are eligible for a visa and their relationship is genuine and subsisting. If the Home Office has doubts regarding the evidence provided to meet any of the relationship requirements, they may request an applicant to attend an interview. The following requirements are assessed:
➢ Partner requirements
Both the main applicant and the dependent partner must be above 18 years of age on the date of application.
The application of a dependent partner (who is either married to or is in a civil partnership with the main applicant) will be rejected if the relationship is found to be polygamous and another person already holds permission as a spouse or civil partner of the lead applicant, regardless of whether that relationship has ended.
The application of a dependent child will also get refused if the child’s parents are found to be in a polygamous relationship.
➢ Prove your relationship with your partner: Genuine and subsisting
To secure a dependent Skilled Worker visa it is necessary to prove that your relationship with your partner is genuine and subsisting.
You must be able to furnish evidence of either of the following:
- You are in a civil partnership or marriage that is lawfully recognised in the UK. You can evidence marriage or civil partnership certificate;
- An overseas registration document for a same-sex relationship which is eligible to be treated as a civil partnership under the Civil Partnership Act of 2004;
- You have been living together with your partner in a relationship for at least 2 years before the application submission date for a Dependent skilled worker visa. The evidence of cohabitation include:
- bank statement, building society statements, council tax, or utility bills
- residential mortgage statements or tenancy agreements
- documents of residential address to prove cohabitation.
This is not an exhaustive list and other documents can be used to demonstrate a relationship is genuine and subsisting.
The lead applicant and the dependent partner must intend to live together throughout their stay in the UK.
For a child 16 years of age or above
◆ Live with the main applicant or unless they are in full-time education at boarding school, college or university
◆ Be married, in a civil partnership or have any children
◆ Be financially supported by the main applicant
◆ If the child lives with the main applicant, you will be required to prove the documentary proof of cohabitation, such as:
- a bank statement
- credit card bill
- driving licence
- NHS registration document
- an official letter from their university or college that confirms their address
➢ Financial requirements
The main applicant, their dependent partner and children must have an adequate amount of money to support themselves while they are in the UK.
- £285 for your partner
- £315 for one child
- £200 for each additional child
You must have £600 to bring your partner and one child to the UK (£285 for your partner and £315 for your child).
You would also need to have £1,270 available to support yourself in making your application.
You or your dependents will need the money available for 28 days consecutively. The 28th day must be within 31 days of you or your dependents applying for this visa.
➢ Criminal record certificate requirements
Where a Skilled Worker is being sponsored for a job in a specific occupation code, the dependent partner applying for entry clearance as the partner of the Skilled Worker must provide a Criminal Record Certificate. The Criminal Record Certificate must be issued by the relevant authorities from all countries in which the applicant has been residing for at least 12 months or more (whether continuously or cumulatively) in the 10 years before the start of the application.
How to proceed with the application
The dependents of the main applicant, either partner or a child, must make an online application and pay the relevant fees. They also need the main applicant’s application number, called a Global Web Form (GWF) or a Unique Application Number (UAN).
As part of their application, the dependent partner and children will need to prove their identity. They must:
- have their fingerprints and photograph taken at a specific visa application centre for a biometric residence permit, or
- use the ‘UK Immigration: ID Check’ app to scan their identity document
They will be told beforehand what they need to do when they apply.
The visa application centre may keep their passport and documents while their application is being processed.
Fee required to pay
When the dependent partner or child are applying from outside the UK, the following fee applies:
- £610 per person (CoS for up to 3 years).
- £1,220 per person (CoS for more than 3 years.
When the dependent partner or child are applying from inside the UK, the following fees apply:
- £704 per person (CoS for up to 3 years).
- £1,408 per person (CoS for more than 3 years.
The main applicant and the dependents will pay lower application fees if the main applicant’s job is on the shortage occupation list:
- £464 per person (CoS for up to 3 years).
- £928 per person (CoS for more than 3 years.
You will also be charged with the immigration healthcare surcharge for each year of your stay – which is usually £624 per year (for adults) and (£470 for children).
How long it takes to process
It usually takes 3 weeks for overseas applications application to get processed.
You can also apply for super-priority visa service, depending on the country you are applying from.
Switch or extend your visa
Dependent partners or children cannot apply to switch to a Skilled Worker dependant visa if they are currently in the UK on:
- A visit visa
- A short-term student visa
- A Parent of a Child Student visa
- A seasonal worker visa
- A immigration bail
- A domestic worker in a private household visa
However, they will be able to extend their visa simultaneously as the main applicant’s visa.
Conclusion: The dependents of a Skilled Worker visa applicant can move to the UK with them if they fulfil various requirements, such as validity, suitability, eligibility, financial and relationship requirements. This blog extensively covers all the requirements and visa processes to begin your application process. With the new immigration system, every dependent seeking to apply for a dependent Skilled Worker visa must follow the changes and requirements to avoid any pitfalls of visa refusal