Global Business Mobility Visa - UK Expansion WoRker

Is the UK Expansion Worker Visa Right for Your Business?

Why Choose the UK Expansion Worker Visa?

For businesses based outside the UK, looking to establish a foothold in the UK market, navigating immigration requirements can be a significant hurdle.

The UK Expansion Worker Visa with our support offers a solution. This visa route is specifically designed for companies yet to commence trading in the UK, providing a pathway to send key personnel to the UK to set up a new branch or wholly-owned subsidiary.

This visa route meets a crucial demand for globally expanding businesses. It simplifies the process of deploying senior or specialist employees to a new market, especially where the company lacks an established presence and faces significant hurdles in securing a traditional UK Sponsor Licence. By streamlining the entry of key personnel, this route is instrumental in establishing a solid foundation for successful business expansion in the UK.

Successful Market Entry

Facilitates a smooth and effective entry into the UK market, allowing businesses to focus on growth and development rather than immigration hurdles.

Strategic Business Growth

Lays the foundations for long-term business success in the UK, including transitioning to a Skilled Worker Licence for broader employment opportunities.

Operational Stability & Expansion

Provides a stable platform for early UK expansion phases, paving the way for growth, employee settlement, and sustained business operations.

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The UK Expansion Worker Visa Process and What it Means:

The process of obtaining the UK Expansion Worker Visa involves two primary parts:

Obtaining the Sponsor Licence
The first step is acquiring a sponsor licence specific to the UK Expansion Worker category of the Global Business Mobility Visa pathway. This licence is the gateway for businesses to legally sponsor and bring their key employees into the UK. It requires demonstrating a credible plan to establish a business presence in the UK, backed by evidence of ongoing overseas operations.
Visa Application
Once the sponsor licence is secured, businesses can then proceed to sponsor their employees for the UK Expansion Worker Visa. This visa allows these employees to live and work in the UK, engage in setting up the business, and even bring their families along, subject to meeting eligibility requirements.

Future Steps and Skilled Worker Licence:

After the initial establishment phase:

Increasing the Rating and Expanding the Team
Initially, a business may bring over one senior employee. However, upon establishing a presence and upgrading the sponsor licence to an A-rating, it's possible to sponsor up to five workers. This expansion is pivotal for scaling operations in the initial years.
Transitioning to Skilled Worker Licence

The journey doesn’t end with the establishment of the UK branch or subsidiary. Once the business is operating successfully, the next strategic move is to apply for a Skilled Worker sponsor licence. This licence is a key component for long-term growth, allowing for the sponsorship of a broader range of employees as the business needs evolve. It also starts the clock for employees on a 5-year path to settlement in the UK.

Start Your UK Expansion:

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Post Licence Approval - Expansion Worker Visa Application

With the successful acquisition of the UK Expansion Worker Sponsor Licence, your business is now poised to take a significant step forward in its expansion journey.

This pivotal moment enables the designated individual – the cornerstone of your UK business establishment – to apply for their UK Expansion worker visa. This process marks the beginning of actualising your business presence in the UK.

Overview of the Visa Application Process

Who Can Apply?

Age Requirement
Applicants must be at least 18 years old.
Employment Condition
They must be currently employed by a linked overseas business and have worked for that business for a specified minimum period unless exempted under certain conditions.
Sponsorship Necessity
The UK Expansion Worker visa mandates having a UK sponsor.

Application Process for the UK Expansion Worker Visa​

Home Office Sponsorship Licence Collate Supporting Documents
01. Online Application

Applicants must fill out an online application using their Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) reference number. Applications can be submitted up to 3 months before the scheduled start date in the UK.

Home Office Sponsor Licence Review System and Processes
02. Identity Verification

Proving identity and providing supporting documents are essential parts of the application. This may include attending an appointment for biometric information.

Home Office Sponsorship Licence Application Submission
03.Key Requirements
  • A valid CoS from a licensed UK sponsor.
  • A passport or other travel document for identity and nationality verification.
  • Evidence of employment with the overseas employer for at least 12 months, if applicable.
  • Proof of sufficient funds.
  • A valid tuberculosis test certificate for applicants from certain countries.
Home Office Sponsor Licence Decision Processing Time
04. Send Documents to UKVI

The required application supporting documents are sent to the Home Office for consideration.

Home Office Sponsorship Licence Decision Outcome
05. Application Outcome Notification

Decisions are typically made within 3 weeks for applications from outside the UK, and within 8 weeks for those within the UK. The optional priority service typically reduces this to 5 working days.

Visa Duration and Extensions

Validity of the Visa
  • The visa is granted for 12 months after the job start date on the CoS or 14 days after the job end date, whichever is shorter.
  • Extensions are possible but only for an additional 12 months.
  • The maximum stay on a UK Expansion Worker visa is 2 years.
Additional Considerations
  • Cumulative Period Limit: Expansion workers are subject to a maximum stay of 5 years in any 6-year period under various GBM visas.
  • Path to Settlement: The UK Expansion Worker route doesn’t lead directly to UK settlement. However, employees may apply to switch into the Skilled Worker visa route once the company is established. This provides a path to indefinite leave to remain, subject to eligibility.


We recognise each organisation’s unique challenges when applying for a UK Expansion Worker Visa. To meet these diverse needs, we offer a range of specialized packages. We aim to provide clear and transparent pricing, ensuring you fully understand the typical fees involved in this process.

🔍 Tailored Solutions: Our packages are designed to address common requirements, yet we understand the importance of adaptability. We are committed to customising our services to match the specific demands of your organisation’s UK expansion journey.

💡 Transparent Pricing:  Showcasing our standard packages is part of our commitment to transparency. This approach lets you gain a clear perspective on potential costs, facilitating an informed decision-making process for your expansion strategy.

📞 Moving Forward with Your UK Expansion: If our packages align with your financial planning, we encourage you to contact us. Let’s discuss how we can assist in streamlining the process of setting the foundation for your successful business growth in the UK.

Immtell's Professional Fees

Fast Track

Sponsor Licence Application
£ 3,500 + VAT
  • Initial Sponsorship Eligibility Review
  • Guidance on appropriate supporting documents
  • Preparation and guidance on submission of the online Sponsor Licence application
  • Preparation and filing of application pack and legal submission letter to the Home Office for consideration
  • Submission for FAST TRACK processing by the Home Office
  • Liaising with the Home Office regarding any queries or clarifications
  • Post-approval guidance on licence maintenance and compliance

Fast Track + Visa

Sponsor Licence Application + 1st Visa Application
£ 4,500 + VAT
  • All features of "Fast Track
  • End-to-end assistance with 1 visa application
  • Eligibility assessment
  • CoS (Certificate of Sponsorship) drafting and assigning
  • Advice on English language and TB test requirements (if applicable)
  • Application preparation and online submission
  • Appointment booking
  • Responding to queries from the Home Office on behalf of the sponsor or visa applicant
  • Review of issued documents and provide entry advice
  • Post-arrival Biometric Residence Permit accuracy check
Best value


Sponsor Licence Application
£ 3,000 + VAT
  • Initial Sponsorship Eligibility Review
  • Guidance on appropriate supporting documents
  • Preparation and guidance on submission of the online Sponsor Licence application
  • Preparation and filing of application pack and legal submission letter to the Home Office for consideration
  • Submission for standard processing by the Home Office
  • Liaising with the Home Office regarding any queries or clarifications
  • Post-approval guidance on licence maintenance and compliance

Estimated Government Fees

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