Understanding the UK Point-Based System for Visas 1

What is the UK Point-Based System for Visas?

The UK Point-Based System is an immigration system introduced by the UK government in 2008. It is a system that assesses the eligibility of foreign nationals who want to come to the UK for work or study purposes. The applicant is required to score a certain number of points based on various factors, such as skills, qualifications, and language proficiency.

Types of Visas Available Under the Point-Based System

The UK Point-Based System offers five different types of visas:

  • Tier 1 (Exceptional Talent) Visa
  • Tier 2 (General) Visa
  • Tier 4 (Student) Visa
  • Tier 5 (Temporary Worker) Visa
  • Global Talent Visa
  • The purpose and eligibility criteria for each visa type may vary. For example, the Tier 1 visa is for highly skilled workers and entrepreneurs, while the Tier 4 visa is for students who want to study in the UK.

    How to Score Points for the UK Point-Based System

    The UK Point-Based System assesses points based on various factors. The primary factors considered are:

  • English language proficiency
  • Qualification level
  • Type of job offer
  • Sponsorship
  • The applicant must score a certain number of points in each category to qualify for their desired visa type. For instance, the Tier 2 General visa requires an applicant to score a minimum of 50 points for a job offer from a licensed sponsor and 10 points for English language proficiency.

    Requirements for Sponsoring Employers

    If an applicant is applying for a Tier 2 (General) visa, they must have a valid job offer from a UK employer who has a Tier 2 sponsorship license. Employers who want to sponsor workers under the Point-Based System must fulfill certain criteria:

  • Register for a Tier 2 sponsorship license
  • Advertise the job offer to UK jobseekers before offering it to a foreign national
  • Offer the applicant the salary and benefits stated in the job offer
  • Provide a Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) to the applicant
  • How Long Does the UK Point-Based Visa Application Process Take?

    The time taken for a UK visa application to process depends on various factors, such as the type of visa applied for, the applicant’s country of origin, and the time of application. In most cases, the visa application is processed within 3 weeks. However, it may take longer for certain visa types that require additional checks, such as the Tier 1 visa.


    The UK’s Point-Based System is a comprehensive immigration system that aims to attract highly skilled foreign nationals and students to the UK. The system assesses applicants based on a points-based assessment and requires them to meet specific criteria to qualify for a visa. Understanding the eligibility criteria and requirements of the UK Point-Based System is crucial for those who want to come to the UK for work or study purposes. Discover additional details about the topic by accessing this carefully selected external resource. apply for british citizenship, dive even deeper into the subject and enhance your learning experience.

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