Scale-Up Visa UK


The Scale-Up visa UK was created in 2022 and is a great way to move to the UK if you are eligible. Highly skilled individuals can join a fast growing company who meet the criteria in order to continue expanding their business. The Scale-Up visa is part of the UK government’s efforts to attract and retain top entrepreneurial talent and promote innovation and economic growth in the country.

Points Required?

70 points

Who Qualifies?

Graduates or skilled workers who will earn a minimum of £34,600 with a job on the Scale-Up Occupations List. Applicants can apply with their spouse/partner and dependent children.

How Long Can You Stay?

Up to 2 years with an option to extend to five years, after this period you can apply for permanent residency.

Processing Time?

After you have submitted your online application, proved your identity and provided the relevant documents, 90% of applicants are processed within 3 weeks.



What is a Scale-up Company?

The UK government defines a Scale-Up business including start ups as “companies who achieve growth of 20% or more in either employment or turnover year-on-year for at least 3 years and employed a minimum of 10 people at the start of the 3 years will be eligible to sponsor talented individuals through the Scale-up visa”.

Eligibility For Scale-Up visa UK

In order to qualify for this visa you must meet several minimum requirements.

  • Worked for an employer that has been approved for a Scale-Up sponsor license
  • Have a valid certificate of sponsorship related to the role
  • Job must be on the Scale-Up Occupations List
  • Salary must meet the minimum threshold of £34,600

Occupations Eligible for Scale-UP Visa UK

First thing to check is your job matches an occupation on the Scale-Up Occupations List. If your occupation is not listed here unfortunately you don’t qualify for the visa this year, but occupations are added and removed annually. But don’t lose hope! There are several other visas you may qualify for.

You must meet the minimum salary threshold for this visa, which is currently £36,300.

Lastly, Your offer of employment must be from an approved UK employer or sponsor.

The UK Government holds a register of approved companies, check if your employer is on here and which visa they qualify for. We suggest using CTRL + F to search as it’s currently more than 2000 pages long! Scale-Up Worker must appear in the Route column.

Most Common Job Roles

  • Scientists
  • Engineers
  • Programmers
  • Software Developers
  • Research and Development Professionals
  • Economists
  • Architects
  • Technicians
  • Financial and Investment Advisers

Scale-Up visa UK Cost

You must have sufficient funds when applying for the Scale-Up Visa, the total minimum costs will vary depending on your circumstances.

Application Fee

When applying from outside the UK the application fee will be £822.


The Immigration Health Surcharge (IHS) entitles you to use the NHS if you become unwell or have an accident while in the UK.

You have to pay the IHS even if you do not use the NHS or even if you have your own private health insurance, the cost is £1,035 per year.

If you are applying for a 2-year visa you will have to pay £1,035 each year, therefore you will have to pay a total of £2,070.

Sufficient Funds

You must have at least £1,270 in your bank account to show you can support yourself in the UK, a bank statement will suffice.

The financial requirement is that you show you have enough money for your living costs for yourself and dependants while you move to the UK.

You do not need to show funds it you have been living in the UK for 12 months or more with permission on the date of application.

Documentation REQUIRED FOR Scale-Up VISA UK

You must bring relevant documentation that will require some preparation before arriving in the UK. Although, This will vary depending on your occupation, nationality and length of stay.

  • Certificate of Sponsorship
  • A valid passport for the entirety of the visa
  • Occupation and Salary
  • Bank statement proving sufficient funds
  • Name of employer and license number

Criminal Record Certificate

If you are applying for certain jobs mostly in the public sector such as healthcare, welfare and education sectors. You will need to provide a criminal record certificate for any country in which, since the age of 18, you have been present for 12 months or more in the 10 years before the date of your application.


For most applicants you must prove your identity by booking an appointment at a Visa Application Centre in your current country. The appointment will include collecting your fingerprints, facial photograph and signature. The UK government website has a list of addresses for each eligible country.

Can I bring my family?

This visa will allow family members to join the main applicant in the UK, they are known as “dependants”. You don’t have to be a permanent resident or have an Indefinite Leave to Remain in the UK to bring your family members. The cost for each dependant is £1846 as of January 2024.

Dependants over 18 can work full time in any profession throughout with no restrictions. The length of time allowed to stay is the same as the main applicants work visa.

Can this lead to British citizenship?

Yes, the first step to becoming a British citizen is being granted a visa that contributes towards the 5 year requirement for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR)

There are 3 main stages to being granted British citizenship.

  • Live and Work in the UK for 5 years on a work visa
  • Apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR)
  • Apply for Naturalisation/British citizenship

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