Work Permit Visa

Tier 2 skilled worker licence

October 6, 2019 1,374

A lot of restaurants experience difficulties in recruiting skilled chefs. To become a skilled chef in most national cuisines takes a few years’ experience and it is not always easy for restaurant owners to recruit the right people.

This is recognised by the Home Office, and they classify skilled chef as a “shortage occupation”. The shortage occupation list is a list of jobs with which the Home Office considers that there are particular difficulties in recruitment.

The most significant thing about a job being included in this list is that it is easier for employers to recruit under the Tier 2 skilled worker scheme. This scheme enables skilled workers from outside the EEA to come to work for a UK employer in a specific skilled job.

To be able to sponsor a Tier 2 migrant the UK employer must hold a Tier 2 sponsor licence. This licence is granted by the Home Office, and a formal application must be submitted.

The application is in two parts: (i) an online application and (ii) a submission of various hardcopy documents. The hardcopy documents are documents which demonstrate that the employer is a bona fide organisation which meets relevant legal requirements.

If the sponsor licence is granted then the employer will be able to apply to the Home Office to sponsor a suitably-skilled migrant so that they can work for them. If the job is on the shortage occupation list this is easier than otherwise because the job does not need to be advertised. If the Home Office grants permission for this then the migrant will need to submit a Tier 2 visa application to the UK immigration authorities. If this application is successful then the migrant will be able to start work for the employer.

The situation for restaurants in this respect has recently been made additionally easy. There was previously a rule that a restaurant that had a takeaway operation was not allowed to sponsor Tier 2 migrants. This rule has now been removed. Any restaurant (of any national cuisine) may now be able to sponsor Tier 2 chefs, provided that the chef job is sufficiently skilled that it requires at least five years’ experience – so for example a kebab shop or hamburger restaurant would not qualify.

Many good restaurants of course do provide a takeaway service and they were thus previously unable to sponsor chefs but now this problem no longer exists.

So if you are a restaurant owner who is struggling to get the skilled chef you need we at Get UK Visa may be able to assist you along the Tier 2 route.


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