I Have A Skilled Worker Visa, Can I Take A Second Job?

In light of the ongoing cost of living crisis, many workers may be looking for additional sources of income. For sponsored migrant workers, however, it may not be as straightforward as simply finding a second job. The worker has to ensure that their visa conditions allow them to take on more work, and their employer has to ensure they’re complying with their immigration obligations when hiring the individual.

The following guide is for UK employers looking to recruit migrants already working in sponsored job roles, explaining the rules on sponsored worker second employment. We also examine this issue from the perspective of the primary employer and sponsor, from what duties they have to report a sponsored worker for having a second job in breach of their visa conditions to what steps can be taken by the employer to stop a sponsored worker from taking on a second job.

Is sponsored worker second employment permitted?

When UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) gives a sponsored worker a visa, their permission to stay in the country is subject to a number of terms, such as limits on other work. Depending on the type of visa the worker has, they may be able to get a second Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) and do what is called “additional work,” “supplementary work,” or “secondary work.”

Visa worker supplementary employment rules

Other types of sponsored workers, can only take on extra paid work, called “supplementary employment,” if they are still working in their sponsored job “and” this extra work meets the following conditions:

– it is in the same profession and at the same professional level as the role for which their CoS was given, or

– it is a job in a shortage occupation that is no more than 20 hours a week and takes place outside of the standard working hours for their main job role.

But not all sponsored workers are allowed to take supplementary work. Both the sponsored worker and the supplementary employer must make sure they know who can and who can’t take this kind of work and, if it is allowed, what the conditions of that work are. In particular, a supported foreign worker can only take on extra work if they have been given permission to enter or stay in the UK through one of the following work routes:

  • the Skilled Worker route
  • the Intra-Company routes in place prior to 11 April 2022
  • the GBM Senior or Specialist Worker route, but only under the rules relating to transitional arrangements for these workers
  • the T2 Minister of Religion route
  • the International Sportsperson route
  • the Creative Worker route
  • the Government Authorised Exchange route
  • the International Agreement route, but only if the worker has been granted leave as an employee of an overseas government or international organisation
  • the Religious Worker route.

In situations where extra work is allowed, it doesn’t have to be with a licenced employer. Also, supported workers don’t have to tell UKVI if they get a second job as long as it meets the requirements for additional employment.

But if a foreign worker takes on extra paid work that doesn’t meet the necessary requirements and UKVI hasn’t given them permission to do so, they will be in violation of their terms of stay. Any company who hires that person will also be breaking the law. So, a sponsored worker should always tell their new employer that the work they are doing is in addition to the work they are already being paid to do. This is so that their new employer can make the checks required by the law to stop people from working illegally. If they don’t, both of them could face serious consequences.

Instruct me?

If you want to instruct me, please email donm@queensparksolicitors.co.uk or queensparksolicitors@gmail.com or call us on 07446 888 377. My name is Atty Magsino of Queen’s Park Solicitors. I am a UK qualified lawyer and solicitor.

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