Post Study Work Visa UK for Indian Students: All You Need to Know

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post study work visa uk for indian students

Staying in the UK after graduation is possible! Students can apply for a post study work visa. The Post Study Work Visa UK for Indian Students is granted for a period of 2 years. During this period, an Indian student can seek employment or start a business in the UK. Moreover, you can even take up voluntary work and travel abroad and come back to UK. The UK post study work permit has made it a desirable destination for Indian students to study in the country. Keep reading to learn more about the Post Study Work Visa UK for Indian Students: its eligibility requirements, documentation, application process, fees, and more. 

Can Indian Students Work in UK after Graduation?

Definitely! Indian students can stay back in the UK after completing their studies from a higher education institution in the UK. The UK post study work visa is also known as the ‘Graduate Visa’. It is granted for 2 years to the Indian students. On January 1st, 2021, the visa came into effect. Thus, enabling students to stay back in the country. The visa also makes it feasible for PhD students. They can stay for 3 years in the UK with a graduate visa. 

What is the UK Graduate Visa?

The post-study work visa UK for Indian students is also called the ‘Graduate Visa’. The visa permits students who have graduated from a higher educational institution in the UK to stay back in the country. The visa is granted for 2 years. However, the student must be in the UK at the time of application. The PhD students are granted this visa for 3 years. The permitted activities on this visa are: 

  • Seeking employment in the UK
  • Work in Most Jobs that are available in the UK
  • Continue to live with children and partner (if they are eligible)
  • Be self-employed or take up voluntary work
  • Travel abroad and return to the UK 

It is important to note that although these activities are permitted, a student cannot apply for most benefits available to UK citizens. For example, benefits coming from public funds, or state pension. Successful applicants will receive a full list of what they can and cannot do in the UK.

Click here to learn about the UK Skilled worker visa 

Eligibility Requirements of a UK Post Study Visa

A post-study work visa UK for Indian students is only granted after the student meets the eligibility requirements. The criteria for the visa are as follows:

  • The student is in the UK and has to hold a Student visa or Tier 4 (General) student visa at the time of application
  • Must have undertaken a BA degree, postgraduate degree, or any other eligible course for a minimum period with a Student visa or Tier 4 (General) student visa
  • The University/college of the student has informed the Home Office about the course completion 
  • Make sure the course is eligible for the Graduate visa. For example, the student must have completed a Bachelor’s, Master’s, or PhD degree in the UK. Courses such as a law conversion approved by the Solicitors Regulation Authority, the Legal Practice Course in England and Wales, the Bar Practice Course in England and Wales, etc are also eligible.

Learn all about UK student visa in 2024 

Documents Needed for Post Study Work Visa UK for Indian Students

The following documents are needed for  Post Study Work Visa UK for Indian Students. International students must arrange these documents before applying for the post study work permit.

  • Must have a valid passport or any travel document that specifies the nationality and identity of the student 
  • Students who have a biometric residence permit (BRP) must present the same. The BRP must be provided at the time of the Student visa or Tier 4 (General) student visa application 
  • Provide the Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) reference number
  • Additional documentation may be required (if applicable). For example, proof of relationship with children or partner, and a letter of approval from the scholarship/sponsorship provider if they covered the tuition fees and living expenses of the student in the last 12 months. 

Application Process for a Post Study Work Visa in UK 

The application for a post study work visa UK for Indian students must be made before the expiry of the  Student visa or Tier 4 (General) student visa. It is important to ensure that the university or college has informed the Home Office about the successful course completion. It is not necessary to wait until the graduate certificate has been issued.  Application can be made before that.

  • To apply for the post study work visa UK for Indian students identification proof and documents must be provided.  The application can be made online. However, the partner or the children of the student might have to apply separately 
  • Scan the biometric residence permit (BRP) with the ‘UK Immigration: ID Check’ app. Sign in or create a new UKVI account to start the application process
  • The applicant will be informed of the next steps at the time of application.
  • In case an appointment is needed the applicant will have to submit a passport and other documents till the application is processed
  • Lastly, wait for the application to be processed. It can generally take around 8 weeks. The applicant will be contacted in case of a longer processing time. 
  • It is important to stay in the UK and wait for the decision 
  • If the visa application is approved, an email will be sent to the applicant. The next steps will be provided in the email. 
  • It is possible to cancel the application process. However, the fees will only be refunded if the UKVI has not started the visa processing. 

To learn more about the PSW application process, watch this video

Credit: @Indie_Traveller

Learn all about UK Work Permit : Types, Fees, and Application Process

Can I bring my Wife to UK on PSW?

Yes. It is possible to stay with your Indian wife on a PSW ‘dependent category. However, this is only possible if the partner has already joined the applicant on the current Student visa or Tier 4 (General) student visa. The same goes for children. In case the application is successful, the visa of the partner or child will expire the same day it expires for you (as in the main applicant). To add your wife under the ‘dependent category’ you must proof of any of the following:

  • Civil partnership or marriage recognized in UK 
  • Proof of living together for 2 years or more 
  • Proof of relationship (minimum 2 years) where living together is not possible. For example, studying in different places, or relationships is not accepted in the culture 

Fees for UK Post Study Work Visa

The fees for Post Study Work Visa UK for Indian Students include the health care surcharge and the fees of the application. The healthcare surcharge cost (Generally £1,035 for each year)  has to be paid depending on the years of visa validity. Those who work the public sector healthcare may get a refund. 

Particulars Application Fee 
Application cost £822 
Healthcare surcharge (2 years)£2,070
Healthcare surcharge (3 years)£3,105

What happens after 2 years post study work visa in UK?

The post study work visa UK for Indian students is valid for 2 years. However, the PhD students can stay for 3 years. After the visa validity expires, the person who has obtained the post study work permit will have to leave the country. It is possible to stay in the UK after the visa expiry. However, for this, the person will have to apply for a new visa type. For example, a family-based visa, or a work visa. Application for leave to remain can also be met. The eligibility requirements have to be met for the same. 

Relevant Reads:

UK Visa Requirements for Indians Super Priority Visa UK 
Permanent Resident Visa Canada 2024UK Spouse Visa: Fees, Documents, Rules
Can You Study in the USA with a B2 Visa?All About France Visa and Its Types 


Is UK removing PSW in 2024?

No. UK is not removing the PSW or the graduate visa for students. What they have done is restrict the students on a post study work visa from switching to a skilled worker visa. Starting this year, those who have obtained a post study work visa cannot switch to a skilled work visa. The change has destroyed the alternative pathway for the students to stay in UK for an extended period. 

What is the new rule for PSW in UK?

The minimum income required by a spouse or partner visa has increased to £29,000 (as of 11 April 2024). The amount is expected to further increase to £34,500 at an unspecified time this year. By 2025, the minimum amount needed will be £38,700.

Is it easy to get PR in UK after study?

No. After completing the education, the international student will have to stay in the UK for 5 years. Only then the PR will be granted. If the applicant has met the eligibility criteria, then the PR process is generally smooth. 

We hope you now understand what is post study work visa UK for Indian students. Want to apply for a Visa for your study abroad journey? Drop us a comment in the section below, or you can connect with a visa expert at Leverage Edu, and we will guide you on your dream journey!

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