Studied at a UK Institution- What next - | Hudson McKenzie


Studied at a UK Institution- What next

March 18, 2012 | News

The UK Border Agency with effect from 6 April 2012 will be closing down the existing Tier 1 (Post study work) route. As a result, we have been inundated with questions from students looking to extend their stay in the UK.

Rahul Batra who is a Director and Head of Department at Hudson McKenzie has provided answers to the “burning” questions students are having.

In order to retain talent in the UK, The UK Border Agency is making certain changes to the existing routes and is also introducing a new visa category known as Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur).

Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur) category

A new Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur) route has been introduced by the UK Border Agency. This route is for those UK graduates who have been identified by Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) as having developed world class innovative ideas or entrepreneurial skills, will be able to extend their stay in the UK after graduation to develop their business.

The UK Border Agency will allocate 1,000 places and distribute these equally among all applying HEIs. The HEI must be an A rated and Highly Trusted Sponsor for Tier 4 purposes. Initial leave will be granted for 12 months followed by 12 months extension provided the HEI supports the application. Any time spent in this category will not count towards permanent residence.

It is pertinent to note that successful applicants under this scheme will be able to undertake other work up to 20 hours a week. They will also be allowed to bring dependants.

At the end of the second year in this category, an applicant must either switch into Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) visa which requires an investment of at least £50,000 or leave the UK. This lower threshold of £50,000 will also apply to post study work applicants. The other relevant criteria for Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) category i.e. creation of jobs will apply in full.

Applications for a Tier 1 (graduate entrepreneur) cannot be made at the Public Enquiry Office (PEO).  

Tier 2 (General)

The UKBA has also announced that students who have completed their course of study from a UK institution can switch into Tier 2 (General) without the employer having to advertise the post.

The requirement for post study workers to have been employed in the role for six months is also being removed from 6 April 2012.  

There may be other options which a student may qualify for. To discuss these options i.e. how to extend your stay in the UK, please get in touch with the Global Mobility professional you deal with at Hudson McKenzie.

Alternatively, please send an email to one of our London Immigration Lawyers at or call us on 020 3553 7711.