Graduate Visa

Office scene

Work in the UK without a job offer

Office scene

Graduate Visa allows you to live and work in the UK following your studies without needing a job offer.

Read on to learn more about the Graduate Visa and how to make an application for it.

Most importantly, consider getting specialist legal advice and representation for your visa application. This is because the underlying rules and process are complex and you, as a layperson, may not be able to interpret the rules and apply them to your circumstances correctly.

A refusal with prejudice may also make a future application much more complex or even impossible in certain circumstances. Getting specialist legal advice and representation at an early stage is therefore advisable to maximize the prospects of success.

1. What is a Graduate Visa?

The Graduate Visa route allows international students to live and work in the UK after completing their studies. With a Graduate Visa, you can live and work in the UK for at least 2 years.

What sets the Graduate Visa apart from other visa routes is that there is no job offer requirement, giving you the flexibility to work, change jobs or employers without any restrictions.


2. Who is eligible for the Graduate Visa?

To be eligible for the Graduate visa, it is required that:

  • you must be in the UK on a Student Visa
  • you must have studied a UK bachelor’s degree, postgraduate degree or other eligible course, with your Student visa from an eligible education provider (university or college)
  • your education provider has informed the Home Office that you’ve successfully completed your course

You can ask your education provider if you’re not sure whether they’ve informed the Home Office that you’ve successfully completed your course.


3. Am I eligible for the Graduate Visa if my degree is from a foreign university?

No, only qualifications from an relevant university in the UK make you eligible for the Graduate visa. If your qualification is from a foreign university, you may be eligible for another type of work visa such as the High Potential Individual Visa, Skilled Worker Visa, Innovator Visa etc.

To see if you are eligible for a UK visa please feel free to book an online or office consultation with our immigration lawyers for specialist advice.


4. How long is the Graduate visa granted for?

The Graduate Visa offers you the opportunity to reside and work in the UK for 2 years.


If you have a PHD or other doctoral qualification, it will last for 3 years.

Your visa will start from the day your application is approved.


5. Can I extend my Graduate Visa?

You cannot extend your Graduate visa. However, you may be able to switch to a different visa, for example a High Potential Individual Visa, Skilled Worker Visa, Innovator Visa etc.

To see if you are eligible for a UK visa please feel free to book an online or office consultation with our immigration lawyers for specialist advice.


6. When can I apply for the Graduate Visa?

You must apply before the expiry of your Student visa and after your your education provider has notified the Home Office that you’ve successfully completed the course. You do not have to wait until you’ve graduated or have been given a certificate.

7. How long does it take to get a decision on the Graduate Visa application?

Once you’ve applied online, verified your identity and provided your supporting documents, you’ll usually be given a decision on your application within 8 weeks.You can stay in the UK while you wait for a decision.

7. What does a Graduate Visa allow me to do?

The Graduate visa allows you to:

However, you will not be able to:

  • apply for most benefits (public funds), or the State Pension
  • work as a professional sportsperson
  • extend this visa unless you can switch to another visa
  • apply to settle permanently in the UK unless you switch into a visa that allows you to settle

If your application is successful, you’ll get a full list of what you can and cannot do with a Graduate visa.

8. Can I work as self-employed with a Graduate Visa?

The Graduate visa allows you to work full-time in most jobs, including self-employment, but excluding working as a sportsperson or coach.

9. How much does it cost to apply for the Graduate Visa?

When you apply for a Graduate visa, you’ll need to pay:

  • a £715 application fee
  • healthcare surcharge of around £624 for every year you’ll be in the UK
  • Any legal fees if you retain a lawyer to advise and represent you. Please contact us for information on our fees and find out how we can help you.

10. Will I have to pay Healthcare Surcharge for my family?

Yes, each family member will have to pay the healthcare surcharge of £624 for every year they’ll stay in the UK

If you or one of your family members gets a job in public sector healthcare afterward, they may be able to get a refund.

11. Can you help me make an application for the Graduate Visa?

Whether it’s an application for the Graduate visa, dependent visa, or indefinite leave to remain / settlement or citizenship, our specialist immigration lawyers are always on hand to provide expert advice and representation to increase your prospects of success.

12. What can I do if my application for the Graduate Visa has been refused?

If your Graduate Visa application has been refused you may be able to make an Administrative Review application to challenge the decision. Our specialist immigration lawyers can advise on the merits of making a fresh application or challenging the decision by way of an Administrative Review application. Please book a consultation for specialist advice to ensure you get your Graduate Visa without any preventable problems.

Looking to make an application for the Graduate Visa?

Don’t risk your application. Maximize your chances of success by getting specialist legal advice for your application. Use the button below to book your online, phone or office consultation.


Work in the UK without a job offer

Office scene

Graduate Visa allows you to live and work in the UK following your studies without needing a job offer.

Read on to learn more about the Graduate Visa and how to make an application for it.

Most importantly, consider getting specialist legal advice and representation for your visa application. This is because the underlying rules and process are complex and you, as a layperson, may not be able to interpret the rules and apply them to your circumstances correctly.

A refusal with prejudice may also make a future application much more complex or even impossible in certain circumstances. Getting specialist legal advice and representation at an early stage is therefore advisable to maximize the prospects of success.

1. What is a Graduate Visa?

The Graduate Visa route allows international students to live and work in the UK after completing their studies. With a Graduate Visa, you can live and work in the UK for at least 2 years.

What sets the Graduate Visa apart from other visa routes is that there is no job offer requirement, giving you the flexibility to work, change jobs or employers without any restrictions.


2. Who is eligible for the Graduate Visa?

To be eligible for the Graduate visa, it is required that:

  • you must be in the UK on a Student Visa
  • you must have studied a UK bachelor’s degree, postgraduate degree or other eligible course, with your Student visa from an eligible education provider (university or college)
  • your education provider has informed the Home Office that you’ve successfully completed your course

You can ask your education provider if you’re not sure whether they’ve informed the Home Office that you’ve successfully completed your course.


3. Am I eligible for the Graduate Visa if my degree is from a foreign university?

No, only qualifications from an relevant university in the UK make you eligible for the Graduate visa. If your qualification is from a foreign university, you may be eligible for another type of work visa such as the High Potential Individual Visa, Skilled Worker Visa, Innovator Visa etc.

To see if you are eligible for a UK visa please feel free to book an online or office consultation with our immigration lawyers for specialist advice.


4. How long is the Graduate visa granted for?

The Graduate Visa offers you the opportunity to reside and work in the UK for 2 years.


If you have a PHD or other doctoral qualification, it will last for 3 years.

Your visa will start from the day your application is approved.


5. Can I extend my Graduate Visa?

You cannot extend your Graduate visa. However, you may be able to switch to a different visa, for example a High Potential Individual Visa, Skilled Worker Visa, Innovator Visa etc.

To see if you are eligible for a UK visa please feel free to book an online or office consultation with our immigration lawyers for specialist advice.


6. When can I apply for the Graduate Visa?

You must apply before the expiry of your Student visa and after your your education provider has notified the Home Office that you’ve successfully completed the course. You do not have to wait until you’ve graduated or have been given a certificate.

7. How long does it take to get a decision on the Graduate Visa application?

Once you’ve applied online, verified your identity and provided your supporting documents, you’ll usually be given a decision on your application within 8 weeks.You can stay in the UK while you wait for a decision.

7. What does a Graduate Visa allow me to do?

The Graduate visa allows you to:

However, you will not be able to:

  • apply for most benefits (public funds), or the State Pension
  • work as a professional sportsperson
  • extend this visa unless you can switch to another visa
  • apply to settle permanently in the UK unless you switch into a visa that allows you to settle

If your application is successful, you’ll get a full list of what you can and cannot do with a Graduate visa.

8. Can I work as self-employed with a Graduate Visa?

The Graduate visa allows you to work full-time in most jobs, including self-employment, but excluding working as a sportsperson or coach.

9. How much does it cost to apply for the Graduate Visa?

When you apply for a Graduate visa, you’ll need to pay:

  • a £715 application fee
  • healthcare surcharge of around £624 for every year you’ll be in the UK
  • Any legal fees if you retain a lawyer to advise and represent you. Please contact us for information on our fees and find out how we can help you.

10. Will I have to pay Healthcare Surcharge for my family?

Yes, each family member will have to pay the healthcare surcharge of £624 for every year they’ll stay in the UK

If you or one of your family members gets a job in public sector healthcare afterward, they may be able to get a refund.

11. Can you help me make an application for the Graduate Visa?

Whether it’s an application for the Graduate visa, dependent visa, or indefinite leave to remain / settlement or citizenship, our specialist immigration lawyers are always on hand to provide expert advice and representation to increase your prospects of success.

12. What can I do if my application for the Graduate Visa has been refused?

If your Graduate Visa application has been refused you may be able to make an Administrative Review application to challenge the decision. Our specialist immigration lawyers can advise on the merits of making a fresh application or challenging the decision by way of an Administrative Review application. Please book a consultation for specialist advice to ensure you get your Graduate Visa without any preventable problems.

Looking to make an application for the Graduate Visa?

Don’t risk your application. Maximize your chances of success by getting specialist legal advice for your application. Use the button below to book your online, phone or office consultation.