CARE WORKER VISA FAQs (for Nigerian applicants outside UK)

What is it?

(Health and) Care Worker visa allows medical professionals to work in the UK for:

  • The NHS,
  • NHS supplier, or
  • Adult social care licensed employer.

You must have a certificate of sponsorship from the employer, to apply for this visa.

How long is the visa?

Your visa can last for up to 5 years before you need to extend it. You may be able to apply for indefinite leave to remain after the 5 years. Whether your visa is for upto 3 years or more than 3 years, depends on your employer/job given.

How long does it take to process the visa?

  • Usually, within 3 weeks from the date of submission (completion of biometrics).



The core requirements are –

  1. Certificate of sponsorship – from the employer.


  1. Finance – you will need to have cash funds of at least £1,270 available to show that you can support yourself in the UK, unless your employer (sponsor) is providing the support for you.


  1. Knowledge of English – You will also need to demonstrate English language ability in all 4 components (reading, writing, speaking and listening) to at least level B1 (intermediate). Usually, you will need to prove your knowledge of English when you apply, by:
    • passing a Secure English Language Test (SELT), or
    • confirming that your English-taught qualification is equivalent to a UK bachelor’s degree, master’s degree or PhD through Ecctis.


  1. Criminal Record Certificate – As you are applying from outside the UK, you will need to provide a criminal record certificate. A criminal record certificate, issued by a country outside the UK, is required for every country where you and/or your spouse has been present for 12 months or more, in the 10 year period before the date we make your visa application. *It may be called Certificate of Good Conduct in Nigeria, and you ­must apply for it in person at the Central Criminal Registry (CCR) in Lagos.


  1. Tuberculosis certificate – You will also need to provide a valid TB certificate.


What is the Home Office Application fees?

Standard application fees are:

  • Up to 3 years – £247 per person.
  • More than 3 years – £479 per person.

Healthcare surcharge:

You (including your spouse and children) will not need to pay a healthcare surcharge (called the ‘immigration health surcharge’ or IHS) as part of your immigration application.

How much do you need to Support yourself?

  • At least £1,270 monthly to support yourself when you arrive in the UK ((unless you are supported by your Employer). You will need to have had the money available for at least 28 days in a row before your application.
  • Your Spouse and Children will need:
    • £285 for your spouse
    • £315 for the first child
    • £200 for each additional child

Can you take on Additional jobs?

Yes. You can take on additional jobs while working with your employer under this visa, though there are conditions.

What does the typical Employer require?


  • A minimum of Level 3, or equivalent, in Health & Social Care or a related subject.
  • A minimum of 6-12 months’ experience of working in care.
  • Previous experience of providing personal care.
  • Experience of delivering care support services.
  • Understand how rights, dignity, privacy, respect, and choice are important when providing care.


  • Care Certificate
  • Level 3 or above in Health and Social Care, or equivalent.
  • Full UK driving licence -*Nigerians can drive in the UK on their original full & valid licence for 12 months.
  • Own car
  • Experience in undertaking risk assessments.
  • Previous experience within a domiciliary care setting.
  • Understanding of regulations and legislation within the domiciliary care setting.
  • Understanding of safeguarding vulnerable people and adults at risk.
  • Previous experience of leading or managing a team.

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