Australians & New Zealanders Contracting in the UK

Each year thousands of skilled Australians and New Zealanders travel to the UK on Tier 5 Youth Mobility Visas (formerly UK Working Holidaymaker Visas) to work for a period of up to two years. Many enjoy the experience so much that they plan to return on alternative Visas such as Tier 1 (formerly HSMP) or Tier 2 (formerly UK Work Permit). However, in recent times many have found they have been unable to qualify due to tighter immigration requirements and issues surrounding Contracting Vehicles.

Tier 5 Youth Mobility Visa

In November of 2008 the Youth Mobility subcategory of Tier 5 replaced the old Working Holidaymaker Visa. For a period applications were down due to tighter requirements surrounding, in particular, the maintenance requirement (i.e. the amount of funds required to qualify for a visa). Today, the number of applications has returned with 2,804 Australians applying in the final 3 months of 2009 and 536 New Zealanders.

Tier 5 Visa Applications submitted in Australia:

  • In December 749 Tier 5 Visa Applications were submitted
  • In November 1,108 Tier 5 Visa Applications were submitted
  • In October 947 Tier 5 Visa Applications were submitted

Tier 5 Visa Application submitted in New Zealand:

  • In December 186 Tier 5 Visa Applications were submitted
  • In November 211 Tier 5 Visa Applications were submitted
  • In October 139 Tier 5 Visa Applications were submitted

Moving to Tier 1 or Tier 2 in the future

If you are working as a Contractor in the UK on a Tier 5 Visa and you would like to apply under Tier 1 General (formerly HSMP) in the future you need to ensure that your contract income qualifies against the Previous Earnings requirement. If you use a Contractor Limited Company you may find it difficult due to the income structuring involved (traditionally an artificial salary of £12k per annum is taken by the contractor and the remainder of income is taken in the form of dividends, which do not attract National Insurance Contributions (NICs)). If you wish to apply under Tier 1 in the future Commonwealth Contractors can help to ensure that your contract income qualifies under Tier 1 while also maximising retention. For more Information call now on 0800 294 4388 or Submit your Details and we will get back to you.

If you do not hold a Masters Degree you will not be able to apply for a Tier 1 Visa. However, many skilled Australians and New Zealanders have found gaining Tier 2 Work Permit Sponsorship a great alternative. If you are an individual with skills and experience difficult to find in the UK you may qualify for a Tier 2 Visa (formerly UK Work Permit).

Commonwealth Contractors

Commonwealth Contractors is a collection of highly skilled professionals from the Commonwealth and beyond. We partner with OISC Registered Immigration Partners capable of professionally representing a Tier 1 Visa Application / Extension and Tier 2 Licensed Consultancy & Associated Trust Partners who may be prepared, where required, to sponsor a doctor on a Tier 2 Visa (formerly UK Work Permit).

To find out more call Commonwealth Contractors now on 0800 294 4388 or Submit your details now and we will get right back to you. Please be prepared to send a copy of a recent CV so that we can pass to interested partners.

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