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UKSolicitorJA, Solicitor
Category: Immigration Law
Satisfied Customers: 4312
Experience:  English solicitor with over 12 years experience
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I have an urgent query regarding Tier 4 to Tier

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I have an urgent query regarding Tier 4 to Tier 2 visa switch. As an LPC graduate would I be eligible to apply for Tier 2 General without having to leave the UK if offered a full-time job with the UK based employer? I was reading through the guidance on Tier 2 visas and so far have been unable to determine whether the LPC qualification will meet the requirements set out in the guidance:
You must have got 1 of these qualifications from your student visa if you want to switch from a Tier 4 to a Tier 2 (General) visa:
- a UK bachelors degree
- a UK masters degree
- a postgraduate certificate in education
- a professional graduate diploma of education
If I am not mistaken the LPC is a QCF Level 7 course and I have also been led to believe that provided you have a job offer in place there should be no further difficulties in this respect.
If you could shed some light on the issue I would greatly appreciate.
The LPC is a postgraduate diploma in legal practice hence you would qualify to switch to a Tier 2(General) visa.
Your LPC provider must have had a Tier 4 sponsor licence.
Yes, you would need a job offer and a certificate of sponsorship, see here for further details
All the best
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
There is a list of qualifications that are not acceptable for Labour Market Test purposes. Would the LPC not fall within that category?
Qualifications that cannot be used for the award of points include:
 Foundation degrees;
 Honorary degrees;
 Qualifications awarded in the UK by overseas awarding bodies;
 Qualifications undertaken solely at an overseas campus of UK institutions;
 Postgraduate certificates and diplomas (except PGCE/PGDE);
 Professional qualifications (whether or not they are of an equivalent level) that are not
There is an exemption from the RLMt for migrants such as yourself who have a tier 4 visa and a postgraduate certification who wish to switch to tier 2.
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Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I have been just advised by another Immigration Consultant that LPC does not fall within PGCE/PGDE exceptions.
Below is the extract from the letter of advice:"A person who completed an LPC will usually receive a Postgraduate Diploma in Law. Alternatively, it could also fall under professional qualifications (similar to ACCA) therefore you will not meet the requirements anyway".Is it correct or not?Kind regards,
I have given you my opinion and cannot comment on what some other adviser may have advised you.
All the best
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I do not ask you to comment on the other consultant's advice. I only seek confirmation of what you have previously told me as the information available on switching from Tier 4 to Tier 2 is quite contradictive. Could you please refer me to the source which states that LPC would fall within the above exceptions?Thanks.
Has the consultant given you any evidence backing their opinion?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Only the reference to Tier 2 Guidance which you have previously provided. However, they did assure me that LPC does not fall within PGCE/PGDE exceptions. They have consulted the Home Office regarding this matter and supposedly they have confirmed that LPC graduates do not qualify to switch. Obviously I cannot verify this information. I have approached you in a hope that you would finally clarify the issue. Is there any reliable source that states in clear terms that LPC is a Postgraduate Certificate/Diploma in Legal Practice? And most importantly have you previously advised anyone in the similar circumstances?Kind regards,
Evgenia Kabanova
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
PGCE/PGDE stand for Postgraduate Diploma/Certificate in education, not legal practice, hence the confusion. I cannot work out whether it will be accepted for the purposes of Tier 2 visa application.
I have not personally advised an LPC candidate before but I do not see why the LPC, which is a postgraduate certification should be singled out and not be accepted. I do know ACCA candidates who have been accepted (contrary to what you appear to have been advised by the other consultant), so I see no reason why you should not be accepted.
Unless you apply, you will never know for sure, so I suggest you go ahead and apply.
All the best