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Teaching in the UK

Work Permits/Visas

European Economic Area (EEA) nationals and their family, and Swiss nationals and their family have the right to visit, live and work in the UK.

Some Commonwealth citizens can apply to be 'working holidaymakers' and are able to work as teachers under this category. Working holiday visas are available to Commonwealth citizens aged between 17 and 30 to come to the UK for a holiday of up to two years.

After twelve months as a working holidaymaker you may be able to apply for a work permit.

As the spouse of someone with a patriality visa you should be entitled to work in the UK. If you do not qualify under any of the above categories you could still be granted a work permit. A school would have to apply for a work permit for you.

Overseas Trained Teachers (OTTs) no longer need to have Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) to gain a work permit in England. An OTT can work for up to four years without attaining QTS, providing they are qualified teachers abroad.

Work permits are normally available for up to a maximum of five years per application, providing the Overseas Trained Teacher possesses Qualified Teacher Status and General Teaching Council (GTC) registration.

Should you wish to leave the school for which the work permit was issued, a different employer can apply for a new work permit for you.

Some agencies try to bring together teachers who want to work in England and schools that are willing to employ OTTs, and apply for work permits on the schools' behalf. It is important to note that the work permit arrangements do not allow direct employment with agencies.

Please note the above summary is for general guidance. You should check your personal position with the British Embassy or High Commission in the country in which you live.Alternatively, visit the Border and Immigration Agency website for further details.

Countries from which nationals do not require a work permit

Austria
Belgium
Bermuda
British Antarctic Territory
British Indian Ocean Islands
British Virgin Islands
Bulgaria*
Cayman Islands
Cyprus
Czech Republic#
Denmark
Estonia#
Falkland Islands
Finland
France

Germany
Gibraltar
Greece
Hungary#
Iceland
Ireland
Italy
Latvia#
Liechtenstein
Lithuania#
Luxembourg
Malta
Montserrat
Netherlands
Norway
Pitcairn Islands
Poland#
Portugal
Romania*
Slovakia#
Slovenia#
Spain
St Helena & Dependencies
Sweden
Switzerland
Turks and Caicos Islands

* Restrictions apply.
# Nationals of these countries working for an employer in the UK for more than one month are required to register on the Worker Registration Scheme.