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Overseas Domestic Worker Visa

The Overseas Domestic Worker visa allows you to come to the UK temporarily and work in certain domestic occupations for your employer.

For more information about the Overseas Domestic Worker visa, including expert bespoke advice on how to apply for one, reach out to one of our immigration advisers today. Call us on 0333 4149244, or contact us online.

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    Benefits of Choosing IAS For Your Work Visa

    Our team of immigration lawyers can provide the right support to ensure you secure a work visa for yourself or your employees.

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    Your immigration lawyer will consider your case and offer bespoke advice, and they will advise you on the optimum route to take to achieve your desired result.

    By working with IAS for your or your employee’s work visa, you make sure that you have an expert eye and hands on your case to boost your chances of success.

    We ensure you are applying for the most suitable work visa to boost your chances of success.

    We provide advice on the appropriate documentary evidence required to support your case.

    You get a personalised approach from a qualified and experienced immigration lawyer

    You work with you and liaise with the Home Office on your behalf to ensure the best possible outcome.

    Regardless of what your personal immigration query might be, IAS is here to help and support you. Call us or enquire online to learn more about how we can help you.

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    Overview of the Overseas Domestic Worker Visa

    The Overseas Domestic Worker visa allows overseas domestic workers to come to the UK on a temporary basis to carry out certain domestic occupations for your employer.

    You will be able to stay in the UK for a maximum of 6 months with this visa.

    You must meet certain eligibility criteria to apply, such as having worked for your employer for at least a year before the date of application.

    Eligible domestic worker occupations for this visa include the following:

    • Cleaners
    • Chauffeurs
    • Cooks
    • Those providing personal care for the employer and their family
    • Nannies

    Note that you cannot apply to extend your visa or settle in the UK with this visa unless you applied for a UK Domestic Worker visa before 5 April 2012.

    What is the Eligibility Criteria?

    In order to be eligible for this visa, you must prove that you:

    • Are 19 or older
    • Have worked for your employer for at least 1 year
    • Work in the same household as your employer or one they use regularly
    • Plan to travel to the UK with your employer, their partner or children
    • Intend to work as a full-time domestic worker in a UK household your employer will live in
    • Plan to leave the UK at the end of 6 months
    • Are able to support yourself in the UK without accessing public funds

    In addition to this, your employer must be either a:

    • British citizen who usually lives outside the UK and who does not intend to remain in the UK for more than 6 months
    • Foreign citizen who is coming to the UK on a visit and who does not intend to remain for more than 6 months

    Your salary must also meet national minimum wage regulations.

    What Can I Do With This Visa?

    With an Overseas Domestic visa, you will be able to:

    • Travel abroad and return to the UK to complete your stay
    • Change employers to another job as a domestic worker in a private household (as long as you don’t exceed the 6 month maximum stay)

    Note that you will not be able to:

    • Work except as a domestic worker in a private household
    • Live in the UK for long periods of time through frequent visits
    • Access public funds

    How Do I Apply?

    You must apply for an Overseas Domestic Worker visa online through the Gov.uk website before you travel to the UK.

    You may apply for your visa up to 3 months before you come to the UK.

    When applying online, you will have to fill out an application form with your personal details and upload your supporting documents.

    You will also need to attend a local visa application centre in order to give your biometrics information in the form of your fingerprints and a photograph.

    What Documents Do I Need to Provide?

    You’ll need to supply the following documents with your application:

    • A current passport or other valid travel identification
    • Proof you can support yourself during your trip, such as bank statements or payslips for the last 6 months
    • A completed ‘Appendix domestic worker statement’ signed by both you and your employer
    • A letter from your employer confirming your job title, how long you’ve worked for them and that you’re a permanent employee

    You must also provide one of the following documents covering the same period of employment:

    • Pay slips or bank statements showing payment of salary
    • Confirmation of tax paid
    • Confirmation of health insurance paid
    • Contract of employment
    • Work visa, residence permit or equivalent passport endorsement for the country where you’re currently employed by your employer
    • Visas or equivalent passport endorsement if you’ve travelled with your employer before

    You must also provide a certified translation of any documents that are not in English or Welsh.

    Get in touch with our immigration experts for help with your Overseas Domestic Worker visa application.

    What Are the Fees and Processing Times?

    The Overseas Domestic Worker visa costs £637 to obtain.

    Your application for a visa should be processed within 3 weeks of your application date.

    You may be able to pay to get a faster decision on your visa application. If you use the priority service, your application will be processed within 5 days. If you use the super priority service, your application will be processed by the next working day.

    Note that these services may not be available in all countries.

    How Can I Extend My Visa?

    You can only apply to extend your visa if you first applied for it on or before 5 April 2012.

    Note that this visa was known as the Domestic Worker in a Private Household visa at the time.

    You can apply to extend your visa every 12 months as long as you meet the eligibility criteria. You must:

    • Be a domestic worker in a private household
    • Have applied for your domestic worker visa on or before 5 April 2012
    • Have continued to live in the UK
    • Apply while you’re still in the UK

    You must also provide both of the following documents:

    • A letter from your employer confirming that they want to continue to employ you
    • A completed ‘Appendix domestic worker statement’ signed by both you and your employer

    You must apply online through the Gov.uk website to extend your visa.

    Note that you can also include your partner and children aged under 18 as your dependents on your application.

    If you have any dependent children aged over 18, they will need to apply separately.

    It costs £1,048 to extend your visa.

    How Can I Apply to Settle in the UK?

    You can only apply to settle in the UK with indefinite leave to remain if you first applied for your visa on or before 5 April 2012.

    Note that this visa was known as the Domestic Workers in a Private Household visa at the time.

    To settle in the UK as a domestic worker you must:

    • Have applied for your Domestic Worker visa on or before 5 April 2012
    • Have been living in the UK legally for at least 5 years
    • Currently have permission to stay here as a domestic worker
    • Have been in the UK as a full-time domestic worker continuously throughout the 5 years (you cannot have been outside the UK for more than 180 days in any 12 consecutive months)
    • Have maintained and accommodated yourself and any dependants without the use of public funds throughout the 5 years
    • Have sufficient knowledge of English
    • Pass the Life in the UK Test

    You must also provide the following:

    • A letter from your employer confirming that they want to continue to employ you
    • Evidence that you can satisfy the knowledge of English and Life in the UK Test criteria

    You must apply for indefinite leave to remain online through the Gov.uk website.

    It costs £2,885 to apply for indefinite leave to remain.

    How Can IAS Help?

    The Overseas Domestic Worker visa is one of the UK’s many temporary work visas aimed at foreign nationals wishing to come and work in the UK.

    If you’re an overseas domestic worker looking to apply for this visa, or you’re another type of worker looking to come to the UK on another type of visa or immigration pathway, IAS can help.

    We are experts in UK and international immigration. Our team of capable lawyers are on hand to help advise and assist in any way you might require, whatever your needs might be.

    Whether you need additional help in applying for an Overseas Domestic Worker visa or other UK visa, need advice on how to settle in the UK, or if you’re an overseas employer who needs help making arrangements for your foreign domestic workers, we can help.

    For more information about the services we provide and how we can help you, reach out to a member of our team today. Call us on 0333 4149244, or contact us online.

    We offer immigration advice sessions as face to face appointments at all of our UK offices, or via the phone.

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    Frequently Asked Questions

    The Appendix Domestic Worker Statement is a form that both you and your employer must complete and sign when applying for an Overseas Domestic Worker visa.

    It asks the signees to confirm details such as the following:

    • The start date and nature of employment
    • Salary
    • Accommodation
    • Healthcare provisions

    If you wish to apply for indefinite leave to remain with your Overseas Domestic Worker visas, you will need to prove your English language ability.

    You can do this by doing any of the following:

    • Passing an approved English language test with at least CEFR level B1 in reading, writing, speaking and listening
    • Having an academic qualification that was taught in English and is recognised by Ecctis as being equivalent to a UK bachelor’s degree, master’s degree or PhD
    • Having already satisfied the English language requirement by doing either of the above in a previous successful visa application

    Additionally, you will not have to prove your knowledge of English if you’re from one of the exempt countries.

    If you’re a victim of modern slavery or human trafficking, you may be able to apply to stay in the UK for up to 2 years.

    To be eligible, you must have come to the UK on an Overseas Domestic Worker visa, or on a Domestic Worker in a Private Household visa, or as a private servant of a diplomat.

    You must also have a conclusive grounds letter from the Single Competent Authority (SCA) confirming that you’re a victim of modern slavery or human trafficking.

    You must normally first contact the police or another first responder organisation before you can be referred to the SCA.

    Once you have a conclusive grounds letter, you should then apply to stay in the UK online via the gov.uk website.

    It is free to apply via this route.

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