Employing workers from outside the UK | Seafish

Employing workers from outside the UK

A Skilled Worker Visa is required for employing migrant workers. Our guidance can help you navigate the sponsor process and be a responsible employer.

UK immigration requirements mean that if you wish to employ workers from outside the UK in the seafood industry, either onshore or within 12 nautical miles of the shore, you will more than likely need to use a Skilled Worker Visa.

This visa allows for the employment of migrant workers for certain skilled
jobs in the UK. This includes experienced deckhands on fishing vessels, fish filleters, and seafood processing line operatives, as well as food manufacturing engineers, mechanics, or skippers.

We understand that many seafood businesses will be new to this system and may find it difficult to understand the process involved. We have created guidance in collaboration with immigration lawyer Darren Stevenson of Wiggin LLP.

a group of people working in a processing factory
The guidance will help employers navigate the Skilled Worker Visa application process to employ non-UK workers.

Skilled Worker Visa guides

The guidance is specifically tailored to seafood businesses, whether you are a fishing vessel, aquaculture business or a processing company, regardless of where you are based across the UK.

There are five guides and collectively these will help you to navigate the process to become a sponsor under the Skilled Worker Visa, to employ non-UK workers, and to meet your obligations as a sponsor and as an employer.

The guides to support you with the Skilled Worker Visa application process and to become a sponsor are:

We recommend you take the time to read through each of these guides before starting the application process.

This material is provided for guidance purposes only and it does not constitute legal advice. If you are unsure about any aspect of your ability to operate as a sponsor, then you are encouraged to seek your own legal advice.

Fishermen in Peterhead
Seafish has created the guidance in collaboration with Darren Stevenson of Wiggan LLP.

Enquiries on the Skilled Worker Visa guidance process

We hope the guides help you to navigate the process. However, we know it is complex and you may have a general question that our guides do not cover.

If you have any general queries about this guidance or the Skilled Worker Visa, please contact Seafish at SkilledWorkerVisa@seafish.co.uk.

Fishermen sorting nets
Several sectors within the seafood industry will benefit from the information