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Service Supplier Visa (Global Business Mobility)

The Service Supplier visa is intended to allow overseas workers to temporarily come to the UK in order to provide services that are covered by one of the UK’s international trade agreements. This visa scheme is one of the UK’s new Global Business Mobility immigration routes and replaces part of the International Agreement visa scheme.

Read this guide to find out how the expert team at WH Solicitors could help you to secure entry clearance to the UK with a Global Business Mobility – Service Supplier visa.

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What is the Global Business Mobility Visa Scheme?

In March 2022, the UK Government launched a number of new visa categories as part of the points-based immigration scheme. The Global Business Mobility scheme is a new set of immigration routes created to help overseas businesses and their highly skilled employees to establish a presence in the UK.

The Service Supplier visa is part of the Global Business Mobility scheme and is intended to provide an immigration route for service suppliers who are providing a service under one of the UK’s international trade commitments.

Global Business Mobility Visa –Requirements for Service Suppliers

There are a number of key criteria you’ll need to meet to qualify for a Global Business Mobility – Service Supplier Visa. These include:

  • being an employee of an overseas business or working as a self-employed service provider within a country or territory that is party to a relevant trade agreement with the UK;
  • having worked in your role for at least 12 months outside of the UK before making an application;
  • providing services to a UK business under a contract that is part of the trade agreement and that is approved by the UK Home Office as a sponsor;
  • having a Certificate of Sponsorship containing all relevant work details; and
  • working in a role that is contained in the Government’s list of eligible occupations;

You will also need to show that you can support yourself when you arrive in the UK. This financial requirement usually means that you will need to show access to funds of at least £1,270 unless you are exempt. The money should have been available in your bank account for a minimum of 28 consecutive days. 

What Counts as an Eligible Occupation

To get approved for a Service Supplier visa, you will need to work in an eligible occupation. If you don’t have an eligible occupation code, you may still be able to come to the UK as a service supplier if you are qualified and have enough experience working in your field.

In most cases you will need to have obtained a bachelor’s degree or higher in any subject, or a technical qualification that is equivalent to a bachelor’s degree. You will also need to have three years of professional experience that is relevant to the service you will provide. This rises to six years of experience if you are self-employed.

Different criteria apply for some occupations, including:

  • Entertainment services – no specific qualifications required
  • Fashion and modelling – no specific qualifications required
  • Chef de Cuisine – an advanced-level technical qualification
  • Management consulting – a relevant bachelor’s degree
  • Translation or advertising – relevant industry qualifications
  • Technical testing and analysis – bachelor’s degree or a relevant qualification


Visa Conditions

Once your application for a Service Supplier visa has been approved, you will be able to stay in the UK for the shorter of 6 to 12 months (depending on the trade agreement you’re providing services under) or the time stated on your certificate of sponsorship plus 14 days.

Whilst in the UK, you will be permitted to work for your sponsor in the job stated on your sponsorship certificate, study and undertake educational courses, do voluntary or charity work, or travel internationally and return to the UK. You may also be allowed to bring your partner, spouse, and children to the UK as dependants if they’re eligible.

Service Supplier visa holders are not permitted to do the following:

  • apply for public funds, most benefits, or the State Pension;
  • change to another job without applying to update their visa;
  • take on a second job;
  • apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain to stay in the UK permanently.


How We Can Help

WH Solicitors is a specialist firm of immigration solicitors providing practical advice to help migrants and businesses with all their immigration law needs. Our expert team will walk you through the law and ensure you have the very best chance of getting approved for a visa whether under the Service Supplier scheme or any other category.

We take a professional approach but add a personal touch, making the visa application process as simple and stress-free as possible. For more information or to get started on your visa application, contact our team today by calling (+44) 01483 608 786 or by emailing contact@whsolicitors.co.uk.

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Service Supplier Visa


Yes, all Global Business Mobility visa routes require sponsorship from a relevant licenced employer. This means that applicants for a Service Supplier visa must receive a certificate of sponsorship from the business to which they are supplying services. The business or employment must also have received a Sponsorship Licence from the UK Home Office.

When applying for a Service Supplier visa, you will usually need to pay:

  • an application fee of £259; and
  • the healthcare surcharge for each year of your stay in the UK.

You will also need to show that you have sufficient funds to support yourself (and any dependants you bring with you) when you arrive in the UK.

Applications for a Service Supplier visa can be made up to 3 months before the day you are due to start work in the UK (this date will be set out in your certificate of sponsorship).

Once an application has been made, you will usually receive a decision within 3 weeks if you’re applying from outside the UK, or 8 weeks if you’re applying from inside the UK.

Once you have been approved for a Service Supplier visa, you will be able to stay in the UK for the shorter of either 6 or 12 months, or the time given on your certificate of sponsorship plus 14 extra days.

The contents of this webpage are provided for informational purposes only and are not intended to constitute legal advice. All information is correct as of the date of publication, and any individual or organisation should be careful to seek qualified advice from a specialist immigration lawyer before acting on any of the topics referenced by this content.