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Visa information

All offers of employment at BU are subject permission to work in the UK and this must be obtained prior to starting work here.  If you do not have current permission to live and work in the UK, you will need to apply for this via a suitable route. The UKVI website provides further information about the routes of entry to the UK.

You will be required to show evidence that you have acquired an appropriate visa before your start date for work with BU will be confirmed. Human Resources will need to check your documents when you arrive to establish your right to work in the UK before any work commences.  To arrange an appointment with Human Resources email  If you have a Tier 2 or Tier 5 visa and have been issued with a vignette in your passport, you will need to collect your Biometric Residence Permit (BRP) within 10 days of arriving in the UK or before your vignette expires, whichever is the later. You can start working for BU with the vignette in your passport, but must show Human Resources your BRP as soon as you have this and prior to the timescales outlined above.  

Tier 2 and 5 visas

BU is a Tier 2 and Tier 5 ‘A rated’ license holder and can sponsor eligible individuals under either of these routes.

Further information about how to apply for a Tier 2 visa will have been provided to you in your offer of employment.   If BU is sponsoring you under Tier 2, we will pay for the Certificate of Sponsorship (COS) and reimburse you for the standard cost of a Tier 2 application form. Please note that you are required to pay for any other additional expenses incurred, for example the NHS surcharge, obtaining certified translations of certificates, undertaking an English Language test if required, dependant applications that are submitted and/or applications for dependant children that are aged 18 years or over.

Additional responsibilities for Tier 2 and 5 visa holders

Once you have your Tier 2 or 5 visa and are working for BU you must meet the following responsibilities to comply with the conditions of your visa. You must notify Human Resources and the UKVI of the following:

  • Any changes to your contact details, i.e. your residential address in the UK or contact details including telephone and mobile telephone number;
  • if for any reason an appropriate registration or professional accreditation is lost;
  • if you are considering taking up supplementary employment or an alternative role whilst under the University’s sponsorship;
  • reasons for absence without permission for more than 10 working days;
  • any period of maternity, paternity, adoption or sickness absence of one month or longer;
  • any periods of unpaid leave in excess of 4 weeks (including sabbatical and career break);
  • if you no longer require sponsorship (e.g. obtain Indefinite Leave to Remain) or resign from the University;
  • any significant changes to your circumstances (e.g. change of name via marriage or deed poll); and
  • any potential breach of the conditions of your leave to remain in the UK (e.g. criminal convictions or civil action).

You must also provide BU with a National Insurance Number and details of a bank account in your name for your salary to be paid into.

To notify Human Resources of the above email  To report a change of circumstances you may also need to contact the UKVI.

Supplementary Work for Tier 2 and 5 visa holders

In addition to the work for which your visa was issued, you may take up supplementary work so long as:

  • the supplementary work is in the same profession as the job specified on your original request for permission to the UKVI on the CoS;
  • the supplementary work is at the same professional level as the work specified on the CoS, e.g. the funding/salary is at the same level;
  • the supplementary work is for no more than 20 hours per week; and
  • the supplementary work is outside the working hours covered by the CoS.

The UKVI do not consider research and teaching as the same profession. Therefore, a researcher would not normally be permitted to give lectures as 'supplementary employment'.

If, however, a researcher has some lecturing responsibilities as part of the role for which their Tier 2 or Tier 5 was issued, and the lecturing responsibilities were noted on the CoS, then you may give additional lectures as 'supplementary employment', providing this also complies with the above rules. Seek advice from Human Resources before engaging in any supplementary work.

Study for Tier 2 and 5 visa holders

You may do courses of study. There is no limit on the numbers of hours you can study or level of course you undertake, however any study undertaken should not affect your ability to carry out the job that you have been employed/engaged to do. Further information can be found in section 38.56 of the Tier 2 and 5 of the points-based system: guidance for sponsors (pdf 3.2mb).  

Cooling Off Period for Tier 2 and 5 visa holders

If you have a Tier 2 visa and this has ended or expired, prior to submitting a new application or extension, you must wait 12 months before applying again under any Tier 2 category. The UKVI call this the ‘Tier 2 cooling off period’. Further information can be found in section 38.4 of the Tier 2 and 5 of the points-based system: guidance for sponsors (pdf 3.2mb).  

Bringing partners, spouses or dependents to the UK

If you are coming to the UK with a spouse, partner or dependent, they may need to apply for a relevant visa. For example, if you are being sponsored by the University to work and live in the UK on a Tier 2 visa, your dependent may be able to apply for a dependent’s visa, which will allow them to live and work in the UK.  Further details of how to apply for are available on the UKVI website.

If you are from an EEA country your partner/spouse should currently be able to travel to the UK and undertake work. 

Other routes of entry may also be available, the UKVI website offers further details.