There are two avenues open to Turkish citizens wishing to settle in the United Kingdom: ECAA 1, which is the self-employed Turkish business persons visa and the lesser known route, ECAA 2, the Turkish Worker Visa.
In essence, the self-employed Turkish visa enables Turkish citizens to establish a new business or join an existing business which will lead to settlement after completing four years in the UK. However, applicants need to show that they have the required funds to be able to do this. There is no minimum financial requirement, though applicants are expected to cover their living expenses, their business expenses and any dependent's expenses, if applicable. If you do not have the requisite finances, but you want to work in the UK, the Turkish Worker Visa may be an option for you.
Am I eligible for a Turkish Worker Visa?
In order to be eligible for a Turkish Workers Visa, you must first meet the following criteria:
- That you are a Turkish national;
- That you have a valid visa with a right to work in the UK;
- That you have previously been employed legally in the UK for at least one year.
If you meet the above criteria, you will further need to satisfy the UK Visas and Immigration requirement that your employment is "genuine and effective".
Apart from the above, there are no further:
- requirements as to your level of pay;
- restrictions on the types of occupation you hold;
- requirements for labour market tests.
What happens after I have obtained a Turkish Worker Visa?
After continuously working for one year on a valid visa, you will be able to extend your stay and continue working for your employer.
You will be able to extend your visa for three years and continue working for the same employer.
You will be able to change employers after continuously working for the same employer for three years (It is important to note that you need to continue working in the same occupation, but you can change employers.)
After four years you will be able to work in any occupation for any employer.
Indefinite leave to remain
There is currently no provision for Turkish workers to be given indefinite leave to remain after completing four years of legal employment in this category. They will need to continue working in the UK for a total of ten years in order to be eligible for indefinite leave to remain on the basis of 10 years long residence.
Family members are able to benefit from the applicant’s application. Dependants are able to extend their stay as long as the applicant has valid leave. "Family members" are defined as spouses, civil partners, unmarried partners and children.
Contact our immigration barristers
If you would like to discuss your eligibility for the Turkish Worker Visa, or if you require legal assistance in connection with an application or an appeal, contact our specialist immigration barristers and lawyers in London on 0203 617 9173 or via our enquiry form.