How to employ an overseas nanny in the UK

Those who live in the UK and have children often would want to employ a nanny or au pair from overseas.

Prior to Brexit, you could quite easily recruit EU nationals who were permitted to work in the UK without the need for a work visa. After Brexit this is no longer possible, and you need to either find someone who is local or who holds a visa category that allows them to work in the UK.

The visa categories that foreign nannies and au pair can use are Youth Mobility visa and Ancestry visa. Those visa holders can work as a nanny or au pair during their visa validity. However, unfortunately there are not that many of them who would like to work as a nanny or au pair. This is why UK families may need to look for other visa options if they plan to have an overseas nanny.

In certain circumstances you may obtain a sponsorship licence and employ a nanny or au pair on Skilled Worker work visa. In our article below we look in more detail into the UK Skilled Worker work visa option for a nanny.

Nanny visa UK

UK ‘Skilled Worker’ work visa for an overseas nanny or au pair

The current UK Skilled Worker visa immigration rules specifically mention Au pair, Child care assistant, Child minder and Nanny, as the jobs that qualify for UK Skilled Worker visa. In the Appendix Skilled Occupations you will find the ‘Soc Code 6122 Childminders and related occupations’.

6122 Childminders and related occupations• Au pair
• Child care assistant
• Child minder
• Nanny
Soc Code 6122 Childminders and related occupations

Skilled Worker visa requirements

The UK immigration rules set out specific requirements for Skilled Worker visa. Main requirement is that the employer business needs to have a sponsor licence. Unfortunately individual household cannot be a sponsor under the Skilled Worker visa. It has to be a business.

An overseas worker whom you wish to employ as a nanny will need to know English language to CEFR Level B1 in speaking, listening, reading and writing and be of good character without criminal record.

In addition, the migrant must be paid at least the minimum yearly salary of £25,600 (increases to £26,200 from 12/04/2023).

Last but not least, it is important to note here that a nanny on a Skilled Worker visa cannot be placed at a private household by a recruitment agency. Nanny has to be employed directly by the sponsor licence holder business.


It is good that there is now a UK work visa category, Skilled Worker, that can be used to employ a nanny or au pair from overseas. It may not solve all the problems for those who intend to employ foreign childminders but at least some employers may be able to use it.

Home Office requirements for Skilled Worker sponsor licence and visa are strictly prescribed. There are additional complexities when the visa is for a nanny or au pair. Therefore, it is important to seek professional immigration advice before starting the immigration process.