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Human Resources

Immigration and International Staff

These webpages are designed to provide information on the UK immigration system for recruiting managers, international staff, and international visitors.  

For managers, this guidance includes information on checking for the right to work and the process to follow when appointing someone who requires a visa to work in the UK.

For staff and visitors, there is information about the various visa routes available, how to apply for a visa, and the expectations that come with working on these visa while in the UK.   

Please Note: From 1 January 2021, free movement between the UK and EU will end. This will mean that all non-British or Irish nationals who are not currently resident in the UK will require a visa to work in the UK. 

There is also useful information for international staff including staff accommodation, NI number, healthcare, travel and banks.   

Immigration Guidance

Please select the below links to find out more about each topic:


  • In January 2024 the Immigration Skilled Charge (IHS) for visa routes increased from £624 a year to £1035 per year. This directly affected any UK visa holders.
  • Paid permitted engagements (PPE) visa are now categories under the standard visitor rules.  This means that guests to QMUL no longer have to apply for a specific visa. However, paid engagements must be conducted within the first month upon entering the UK on the 6-month standard visitor visa route.
  • Under the Skilled Work visa (SWV) route, the supplementary work condition now permits work outside of the sponsored individuals “main” SOC code.  However, they are still only permitted to do up to an additional 20 hours per week and outside of their main working hours.  Please continue to liaise with us if the additiona work is acceptable and meets supplementary work rules.
  • For SWV holders, the general salary threshold increases from £26,200 to £38,700. This is the very minimum an individual can be paid for a sponsored role.
  • The going rate for a SOC code increases from 25th Percentile to 50th percentile. For example, previously for a Lecturer role under SOC 2311, the going rate to be paid would be a minimum of £41,200, this now increases to £47,700 based on a 37.5 hour working week.
  • For individuals that are already on a SWV and need to extend, the general threshold increases from £26,200 to £29,000. Transitional rules will be applied where they will benefit from a reduced increase in threshold and going rates based on the existing SOC code.
  • The Shortage Occupation List is being replaced with the Immigration Salary List. It is a reduced list of occupations needed in the UK work force – very little, if any of the jobs listed benefit QMUL. This list will continue to be under review for the remainder of the year and is subject to change.
  • Illegal working civil penalty increases from £20,000 to £60,000.

Staff Accommodation

Queen Mary’s Estates & Facilities Directorate has a limited number of flats which can be booked by academic departments for periods of up to 3 months at Mile End. The aim of this accommodation is to assist new members of academic staff on their initial arrival in London.

National Insurance Number*
Once you are in the UK you will need to apply for a National Insurance number. Please visit the GOV website to apply online or telephone Jobcentre Plus and they will send you an application form. They may also ask you to go to an interview to confirm your identity.

Telephone: 0800 141 2075, Monday to Friday: 8am to 6pm

*If you have a Skilled Worker Visa then you will have been assigned a National Insurance automatically. This will be shown on the back of your Biometric Residence Permit.

To register with a Doctor (GP) or Dentist please visit the NHS website which will provide details of services in your local area. 

The Transport for London website offers information and advice on how to travel around London including timetable and fares information for the London Underground.

Staff coming from overseas will normally require a reference from their employer before they can open a bank account. If you require a reference please contact your HR Administrator who can arrange one for you.

Queen Mary have a Santander bank branch on campus at Mile End. If you wish to open a bank account with them, please visit the branch which is located near the Village Shop and the canal. Alternatively, you can contact the branch manager Irum Dar at

Other local banks are listed below:

Mile End

Barclays - 92 Bow Road (between Bow Road and Bow Church stations)
NatWest - 154 Roman Road

Barclays - 240 Whitechapel Road
NatWest - 331 – 335 Whitechapel Road

Charterhouse Square and West Smithfield
Barclays - 89 Charterhouse Street
NatWest - 134 Aldersgate Street

Lincoln’s Inn Fields
Barclays - 58 Southampton Row
Sainsbury’s - 29 Kingsway

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