Senior or Specialist Worker Visa

Immigration lawyers supporting businesses and individuals with their senior or specialist worker visa.

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An Overview of UK Global Mobility Visas​

The UK Global Business Mobility visas are a group of sponsored work visas that opened to new applicants in April 2022 and the senior or specialist visa is one of the visas that falls within this category.

Once granted a Global Business Mobility senior or specialist worker visa, the visa-holder will be allowed to come to the UK to undertake the job role for which they’re being sponsored. In most cases, the visa holder will be allowed to come to the UK for the full duration of the role they have been offered, plus a period of 14 days.

Although the visa holder can remain in the UK for the duration of their role, in most cases the senior or specialist worker visa will be used for temporary roles.

Length of Stay

Under a senior or specialist visa the maximum period of stay in the UK will depend on how much the sponsored worker earns. For those being paid a gross salary of less than £73,900 per year, the maximum duration of their stay is 5 years in any 6 year period. This will be calculated by looking at the cumulative permission under both the GBM and ICT routes.

On the other hand, if the sponsored worker is being paid a salary of £73,900 per year or more, they’ll be able to live and work in the UK for up to 9 years in any 10-year period.

However it is important to note, the Global Business Mobility visa senior or specialist worker route does not provide a path to settlement in the UK and the sponsored worker will not be able to apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain. If the sponsored worker wishes to apply to ILR, they may be able to switch to a different route, such as a Skilled Worker Visa.


Who Can Sponsor?

The senior or specialist worker route can be used by any business branch or subsidiary in the UK who are looking to assign either senior managers or specialist employees from a linked overseas business. This replaced the Intra-Company Transfer route from 11 April 2022.

However, in order to sponsor a worker from overseas, the UK-based sponsor will need to have a senior or specialist worker sponsor licence in place. Once this is obtained from UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI), the company will then be able to lawfully employ a transferring senior manager or specialist employee.

Need Support With Your Visa?


A UK Senior or Specialist Worker Visa allows senior executives or specialists to work in the UK for a UK branch of their overseas employer under the Global Business Mobility (GBM) scheme.


Eligibility generally includes:

  • Being a senior manager or specialist employee of an overseas business linked to a UK sponsor.
  • Having worked for the overseas business for a specified minimum period.
  • Meeting the salary threshold and other specific requirements set by the UK government.

The visa is typically granted for up to 5 years within any 6-year period, with possible extensions depending on circumstances. 

Those who are paid over £73,900 will be able to stay for 9 years in any 10-year period. 

Required documents may include:

  • A valid passport.
  • Certificate of Sponsorship reference number.
  • Proof of employment and job role details.
  • Evidence of salary and maintenance funds.
  • Tuberculosis test results (if applicable).

Processing times vary but typically range from 3 to 8 weeks. Priority and super-priority services may be available for faster processing.


Contact Our Lawyers

If you would like more advice or to discuss your visa application with one of our UK Visa specialists, you can contact our team of specialists on 0161 843 9000 or complete our enquiry form below.