Many individuals who require a visa to work at Oxford come to the University on a Tier 2 visa. In comparison to that, another type of work visa, Tier 1 Exceptional Talent, has a number of benefits:
- Greater flexibility on hours of work, place of work, salary, leave and engagement with other organisations. Tier 2 visa holders are restricted to working in their specific role, location etc. and are prohibited from taking more than four weeks unpaid leave in any calendar year. There are no such restrictions on a Tier 1 Exceptional Talent visa.
- More scope for visa extensions. A Tier 2 visa may be extended to a maximum of six years. There are currently no restrictions on extending a Tier 1 Exceptional Talent visa.
- More cost effective. Applicants can make significant savings when applying for a Tier 1 Exceptional Talent visa (including IHS fees) compared to a Tier 2 visa of the same duration, particularly where the individual has dependants.
Tier 1 of the points-based system is intended for 'high value' applicants. These visas are not job-specific (i.e. the holder is generally allowed to take up any post). Therefore, those applying for any type of Tier 1 visa do not require sponsorship from the University.
The Staff Immigration Team can provide advice on and assistance with Tier 1 Exceptional Talent/ Exceptional Promise applications. This is the typical visa route for jobs such as Statutory Professor, Associate Professor, or senior research roles.
Applications under other Tier 1 routes are made by the applicant themselves. The Staff Immigration Team would be happy to assist with advice on straightforward enquiries and signpost to the relevant guidance, where possible. Full guidance about the Tier 1 visa routes can be found on the Home Office website.