Last Updated on March 21, 2022 by Visa Journal
Individuals who have been authorized to perform a primarily pastoral leading role within a genuine faith-based organization or religious order in the United Kingdom are eligible for the UK Tier 2 Minister of Religion Visa. T2 Minister of Religion applicants can join or be followed by a dependent partner and dependent children under the age of 18 on the T2 Minister of Religion path, which can lead to settlement in the UK.
You might want to explore the Temporary Work – Religious Worker Visa alternative if you want to assist the operations of a UK religious institution by doing religious work, such as working in a religious order or doing non-pastoral work for a religious order, for no more than 2 years.
If you’ve been given a job in a religious community (for example, as a minister of religion, missionary, or member of a religious order) in the UK, you can apply for a Minister of Religion visa (T2).
The following are the requirements for getting a Tier 2 Minister of Religion visa:
- Pass the general requirements for a visa grant in the United Kingdom.
- Test of the local labour market.
- The job you want to do must be approved by the workforce in the United Kingdom or the European Economic Area.
- Before issuing you the Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS), your sponsor must have advertised the employment for at least 28 days within 6 months.
- You must be offered a remuneration for your job that is nearly equal to that of UK/EEA workers in the same position.
- This payment must be sufficient to cover your living and accommodation expenses in the United Kingdom for the duration of your work.
- You must have completed missionary training, employment experience in a similar religious role in your own country, or other comparable education, training, or certification.
- Over the previous year, you must not have held a Tier 2 visa.
- This does not apply if you have been absent from the UK during the visa period, have an annual salary offer of £159,600 or more, and have your Tier 2 sponsor’s unconditional written permission to your visa application.
How to Apply:
You must submit your Tier 2 Minister of Religion Visa application within the following timeframe:
- If you’re applying from another country, you must submit your application at least three months before the CoS employment period begins.
- Before the expiration of the current Tier 2 Minister of Religion visa period.
- No less than 28 days before the qualifying period of continuous residency is completed. If you’re asking for a settlement permit from the United Kingdom.
- The earliest you can go to the UK on such a visa is 14 days before the start date of your sponsor’s job contract.
- This is since visas will only be valid for 2 weeks before the start of the CoS.
If you’re applying from outside the UK you have to pay £610; similarly, if you want to extend or switch from the UK you have to pay £704.
- Your sponsorship certificate.
- A payment that is ‘suitable for the job.
- Proof of English language proficiency.
- A bank statement spanning the required period would suffice as proof that you meet the financial requirements.
- Current passport, as well as any expired passports and travel documentation demonstrating your travel history.
- TB test result if needed based on country of residence.
With a Minister of Religion visa (T2), you can stay in the UK for up to 3 years and 1 month, or the duration specified on your sponsorship certificate plus 14 days, whichever is shorter. Work for your sponsor in the position specified on your sponsorship card.
In some cases, work a second job, perform volunteer work-study as long as it does not conflict with the employment you’re sponsored for while travelling overseas and returning to the UK. If your partner and children are qualified, bring them with you as dependents.
You are unable to:
- If you own more than 10% of your sponsor’s stock (and you don’t earn more than £159,600 per year)
- Obtain government funds.
As a bearer of a Tier 2 Minister of Religion visa, you can engage in the following activities:
- When you’ve completed the required term of continuous residence, you can settle.
- Find a part-time job. This is true if the job has a workload of fewer than 20 hours per week, is for the same position as the main job, or is in one of the UK’s shortage occupations.
- Volunteer for a cause. This is relevant as long as it does not get in the way of the main task.
- You can take part in studies if it won’t interfere with your work as a Minister of Religion.
- Travel to another country and then return to the UK.
- Bring your family to the United Kingdom.