Domestic Worker Visa | UK 2024

Domestic Worker

In the United Kingdom, domestic workers play a crucial role in supporting households, providing essential services ranging from childcare to housekeeping. To ensure the smooth functioning of these arrangements, the UK government offers specific visa options for domestic workers coming from abroad. Understanding the nuances of these visas is vital for both employers and employees to navigate the legal landscape effectively.


The Domestic Worker Visa UK is designed to facilitate the employment of individuals from overseas in domestic roles within UK households. These roles can include nannies, cleaners, cooks, and caregivers, among others. These visas provide a legal framework for both employers and workers, ensuring fair treatment and adherence to regulations.

Types of Domestic Worker Visas

Temporary Worker Visa

The Temporary Worker Visa is suitable for individuals who wish to come to the UK for a limited period to work as domestic staff for a specific employer. This visa typically lasts for up to 6 months and is not extendable.

Overseas Domestic Worker Visa

The Overseas Domestic Worker Visa, on the other hand, allows workers to accompany their employers to the UK for a longer duration. This visa is tied to the employer but permits the domestic worker to change employers under certain conditions.

Eligibility Criteria

Temporary Worker Visa Requirements

To qualify for a Temporary Worker Visa, applicants must demonstrate:

  • A job offer from a UK employer as a domestic worker.
  • Ability to support themselves during their stay.
  • Intent to return to their home country at the end of the visa period.

Overseas Domestic Worker Visa Requirements

Applicants for the Overseas Domestic Worker Visa must meet criteria such as:

  • Proof of employment with the same employer for at least 12 months prior to the application.
  • A valid employment contract outlining terms and conditions.
  • Sponsorship from the employer for the visa application.
Domestic Worker

Domestic Worker Application Process

The application process for an Overseas Domestic Worker Visa includes:

  1. Submission of the online application form.
  2. Providing supporting documents, such as a valid employment contract and sponsorship letter.
  3. Paying the visa fee and healthcare surcharge.
  4. Attending a biometric appointment and visa interview if necessary.

Research and Preparation: Before applying for domestic work positions, it’s essential to research the types of roles available, understand the requirements, and assess your own skills and experience. This step helps you determine the type of position you’re qualified for and interested in.

Resume/CV Preparation: Prepare a well-written resume or curriculum vitae (CV) highlighting your relevant experience, skills, and qualifications. Tailor your resume to the specific job you’re applying for, emphasizing any relevant experience such as childcare, eldercare, housekeeping, cooking, or other domestic tasks.

Job Search: Start searching for domestic worker positions through various channels such as online job boards, classified ads, domestic worker agencies, word-of-mouth referrals, or community organizations. Consider networking with friends, family, or acquaintances who may know of job openings or be able to provide references.

Application Submission: Once you find suitable job openings, submit your application along with your resume/CV to the employer or agency according to their specified instructions. Some employers may require additional documents such as references, certifications, or a cover letter.

Interview Process: If your application is shortlisted, you may be invited for an interview. Prepare for the interview by researching the employer or agency, dressing appropriately, and rehearsing responses to common interview questions. During the interview, be prepared to discuss your relevant experience, skills, availability, and any other factors relevant to the position.

Background Check and References: Many employers conduct background checks on potential domestic workers to verify their identity, employment history, criminal record (if applicable), and references. Be prepared to provide references from previous employers or individuals who can vouch for your character and work ethic.

Contract Negotiation: If offered the position, carefully review the terms of employment, including duties, hours, wages, benefits, and any other relevant terms. Negotiate any aspects of the contract that are important to you, ensuring clarity and mutual understanding between you and the employer.

Documentation and Legal Requirements: Depending on the country or region, there may be legal requirements for domestic workers, such as obtaining a work visa, work permit, or other documentation. Ensure that you comply with all relevant laws and regulations governing employment in your area.

Orientation and Training: Once hired, familiarize yourself with the household routines, preferences, and any specific instructions provided by the employer. Some employers may provide training or orientation to help you acclimate to your new role and responsibilities.

Ongoing Communication and Professionalism: Maintain open communication with your employer, addressing any concerns or issues promptly and professionally. Strive to perform your duties to the best of your ability, demonstrating reliability, trustworthiness, and respect for the employer’s home and family.

By following these steps, you can navigate the domestic worker application process effectively and increase your chances of securing a rewarding and fulfilling position

Settling in the UK

The criteria for applying for settlement or indefinite leave to remain (ILR) in the UK, under the Overseas Domestic Worker Visa, again, applies only to those who entered the UK on this visa on or before 5 April 2012. Requirements for settlement include:

  • Duration of Stay: Applicants must have lived in the UK legally for at least 5 years as a domestic worker.
  • Continuous Employment: Must have been employed full-time as a domestic worker throughout the 5-year period.
  • Financial Independence: Should have supported themselves and any dependants without access to public funds.
  • Knowledge of Language and Life in the UK: Applicants must demonstrate sufficient knowledge of English and pass the Life in the UK Test.
  • Fee: The application fee for indefinite leave to remain is £2,404.

Responsibilities of Employers

Employers hiring domestic workers are responsible for:

  • Providing a safe working environment.
  • Adhering to employment contracts and regulations.
  • Ensuring fair treatment and payment of wages.

Challenges Faced by Domestic Workers

Despite legal protections, domestic workers may encounter challenges such as:

  • Exploitative working conditions.
  • Language barriers and cultural isolation.
  • Limited access to support services.

Importance of Domestic Worker Visas

Domestic Worker Visas play a crucial role in:

  • Protecting the rights of vulnerable workers.
  • Regulating the employment of domestic staff.
  • Supporting households in accessing essential services.


Domestic Worker Visas in the UK serve as a vital mechanism for regulating the employment of domestic staff from overseas. By understanding the eligibility criteria, application process, and rights and responsibilities involved, both employers and employees can ensure a fair and lawful working arrangement.