Demonstrating your right to work

Please note that the information set out below is for general guidance only and the actual conditions and criteria are subject to change at short notice. You should contact your local HR representative for advice specific to your circumstances. 

The College's webpage on employing non EEA nationals under the points based system and the UK Government website provide further information.

Permission to work

EEA and Swiss Nationals

You have a right to work in the UK if you are:

  • a British citizen or European Economic Area (EEA) or Swiss national. The British citizenship and European national sections on the UKVI website explain your right to work.
  • a family member of a British citizen, EEA or Swiss national. You will normally be entitled to join them in the UK and look for work, regardless of your own nationality. If you would normally need a visa to enter the UK, you will need to obtain an EEA family permit, which is free of charge.

Turkish Nationals

If you are a Turkish citizen you may be eligible to apply for an European Community Association Agreement (ECAA) visa which would allow you to work in the UK.


UK Ancestry

If you are a Commonwealth citizen, and have a grandparent who was born in the UK, you may be eligible for a UK Ancestry visa which would entitle you to come and work in the UK.

Non EEA Nationals

If you are a non-EEA national who is not eligible for any family/dependent/ancestry route, you will require permission under one of the following tiers of the Points Based Immigration System before you can start work in the UK:

Tier 1 (Exceptional talent) is for people who are recognised or have the potential to be recognised as world leaders in the fields of science and the arts. There are two accelerated application routes for Eligible Fellowships and Senior Academic Appointments

Tier 1 (Graduate entrepreneur) is for graduates identified by UK Higher Education Institutions as having developed world class innovative ideas or entrepreneurial skills, to extend their stay in the UK after graduation to establish or develop their businesses in the UK. They are also permitted to undertake other work to support themselves, in addition to developing their business.

Tier 2 (General) is for workers who have a skilled job offer to fill a gap in the workforce that cannot be filled by a settled worker. Graduates who wish to remain in the UK to work following their studies, and who have a suitable job offer may apply through Tier 2.

Tier 4 (Students) are permitted to work for up to a maximum of 20 hours per week during term time if they are studying at degree level or above at a Higher Education Institution or up to a maximum of 10 hours per week during term time if they are studying below degree level at a Higher Education Institution or at a publicly-funded Further Education College. Students can work full time during vacation times, including the time between the end of their course and the end of their student visa. PhD students may be eligible to apply for a further year after their studies under the Tier 4 Doctoral Extension Scheme, which allows full time work, in most occupations.

Tier 5 is for people who want to come to the UK to undertake temporary work for a licensed Tier 5 sponsor. The only two categories of relevance to the College are:

  • Tier 5 (Government authorised exchange) which allows sponsored researchers and visiting academics who will give lectures, act as an examiner or work on a supernumerary research collaboration to come to the UK for up to a maximum of 24 months.
  • Tier 5 (Youth Mobility Scheme) which allows people from Australia, Canada, Japan, New Zealand Monaco and Taiwan to come and work in the UK for up to a maximum of 24 months.


If you are a dependent of a non-EEA national who has permission to work in the UK you may be able to apply for a dependent’s visa that will allow you to work where this is permitted under the rules of that particular tier.