Switch to this visa

You might be able to apply to change (‘switch’) to a Skilled Worker visa if you’re already in the UK on a different type of visa.

You must not travel outside of the UK, Ireland, the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man until you get a decision. Your application will be withdrawn if you do.

Your partner and children

Your partner or child’s visa will not automatically switch to this visa if you switch yours. If they do not switch their visa, it will be valid until its original end date.

They can either apply at the same time as you, or at any time before their current visa expires.

If you’re switching to this visa as a care worker or senior care worker, your partner or child will not be able to switch as your dependant to this visa.


You must meet the following requirements:

If you’re currently in the UK on a Student visa, you must also meet one of the following requirements:

  • you have completed the course you were sponsored to study
  • your job start date is after your course has finished
  • you have studied for a PhD for at least 24 months

If you got your certificate of sponsorship (CoS) before 4 April 2024 you may be able to meet lower salary requirements.

Who cannot apply to switch to this visa

You cannot apply to switch to this visa if you’re currently in the UK:

You must leave the UK and apply for a Skilled Worker visa from abroad if you’re in one of these categories.


Each person applying will need to pay:

You’ll also need to have your biometric information (fingerprints and a photo) taken. There’s no fee for this.

If you’ve been in the UK for less than 1 year, you’ll also need to prove you have enough money to support yourself.

Proving your identity and providing supporting documents

As part of your application you’ll need to prove your identity.

How you do this depends on where you’re from and the type of passport you have.

You’ll either:

You’ll be told what you need to do when you apply.

Apply to switch to a Skilled Worker visa

You must apply online before your current visa expires.

Once you’ve started your application, you can save your form and complete it later.

Apply now

Continue your application

Find out how to sign in to your account.

How long it takes to get a decision

You’ll usually get a decision within 8 weeks of your application date.

You’ll be contacted if your application will take longer, for example because:

  • your supporting documents need to be verified
  • you need to attend an interview
  • of your personal circumstances, for example if you have a criminal conviction

You may be able to pay to get a faster decision - you’ll be told if you can when you apply.

After you apply

If you need to change something in your application after you’ve sent it contact UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI).

You can ask to cancel your application. You’ll only get your fee refunded if UKVI has not started processing your application.

You’ll get an email or a letter containing the decision on your application. This will explain what you need to do next.