Who is a ‘new entrant’ for Skilled Worker visa & COS – definition

Home Office explanation who is a ‘New Entrant’ for Skilled Worker visa and CoS is in the Skilled Worker Caseworker Guidance. According to the Home Office guidance ‘“new entrant” means a new entrant to the labour market, in other words someone who is near the start of their career, who meets certain criteria. It does not mean an applicant who is making their first Skilled Worker application or entering the UK for the first time.’

It is important to always bear in mind that the ‘New Entrant’ is a technical term with specific meaning assigned to it by the Home Office. You need to read the immigration rules and Home Office guidance in order to understand its meaning. As usual with UK immigration applications, attention to detail is paramount to successful applications.

In our article, we focus on explaining the definition of ‘New Entrant’ in UK immigration law for Skilled Worker visa and Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS), and why it is relevant for skilled worker visa.

Why it is important to know who can qualify as ‘new entrant’ for skilled worker – lower minimum salary

Understanding the definition of ‘new entrant’ is important for assessing the Skilled Worker visa minimum salary. There are 6 different scenarios that should be taken into account when checking what minimum salary must be paid to a migrant worker on a Skilled Worker visa. We explain these 11 options here. One of the scenarios is when your migrant worker is considered as a ‘new entrant’.

What is the minimum salary for new entrant skilled worker visa & COS

The minimum salary for ‘new entrant’ skilled worker has to be no less than £30,960; and 70% of the pro-rated going rate for the occupation code, whichever is higher. When you compare, you will note that the new entrant minimum pay is significantly lower than the standard skilled worker minimum pay of £38,700 per year and 100% soc code going rate.

The lower minimum salary requirement for ‘new entrants’ is an important factor for many sponsor employers. The sponsorship is much less costly when you sponsor a ‘new entrant’ migrant. You may wish to use our Calculator to get an idea of the Skilled Worker visa sponsorship costs.

Further below we explain in more detail who can qualify as a ‘new entrant,’ and for how long someone can be paid the ‘new entrant’ salary or wages.

new entrant worker for skilled worker visa UK

For how long a migrant worker can be a ‘New Entrant’

Granting the Skilled Worker visa application with the ‘new entrant’ minimum salary must NOT mean the applicant’s combined permission as a Skilled Worker, Graduate and/or Tier 2 Migrant would be more than the permitted total, whether or not the permission is for a continuous period. It is important to keep this in mind when deciding on the duration of the Certificate of Sponsorship (work permit) for a ‘new entrant’.

Who can be a ‘new entrant’ for Skilled Worker visa – what are the specific criteria

The applicant must be sponsored for a job in an appropriate eligible occupation code listed in Table 1 of Appendix Skilled Occupations The eligible jobs are at least NQF Level 3 (broadly speaking jobs at high school graduate/A-Level).

In addition to the requirement for the job to be in eligible occupation code, applicants must meet ONE or more of the following requirements:

(a) the applicant must be under the age of 26 on the date of application; or

(b) the job offer must be for a postdoctoral position in any of the following occupation codes:

• 2111 Chemical scientists

• 2112 Biological scientists and biochemists

• 2113 Physical scientists

• 2114 Social and humanities scientists

• 2119 Natural and social science professionals not elsewhere classified

• 2311 Higher education teaching professionals; or

(c) the job offer must be in a UK Regulated Profession and the applicant must be working towards a recognised professional qualification for that profession. The information about the Regulated professions are available on CPQ website; or

(d) the applicant must be working towards full registration or chartered status with the relevant professional body for the job they are being sponsored for; or

(e) the application must be for permission to stay and the applicant’s most recent permission must have been as a Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur) Migrant; or

(f) all of the following conditions apply:

(i) the applicant’s most recent permission, other than as a visitor, was as a Student; and

(ii) that permission is either current or expired less than 2 years before the date of application; and

(iii) in that permission or any previous permission as a Student, the applicant was sponsored to study one of the following courses (not any other qualifications of an equivalent level):

• a UK bachelor’s degree; or

• a UK master’s degree; or

• a UK PhD or other doctoral qualification; or

• a Postgraduate Certificate in Education; or

• a Professional Graduate Diploma of Education; and

(iv) the applicant has completed (or is applying no more than 3 months before they are expected to complete) the course in (iii) above, or the applicant is studying a PhD and has completed at least 12 months study in the UK towards the PhD, or

(g) the applicant’s most recent permission, other than as a visitor, was as a Graduate, and that permission is either current or expired less than 2 years before the date of application.