I have been struggling to find concise answers and need to come to a decision regarding my travel.
To briefly summarize my situation, I have recently been hired by a company that has offices both in the US and in the UK. I am a US citizen and my girlfriend of over a year is attending university in the UK. Since I have recently finished university and started working, I would like to live with her in the UK while she completes the remainder of her degree.
I know that I am allowed to work in the UK since the company exists in both countries and I will be paid in USD. The company is also ok with me working remotely from the UK, especially since that will put me closer to the software development team.
Unfortunately, since I am so recently hired, I'm not allowed to begin the visa process for a work permit for 4 weeks.
Here are the concerns that I have:
- Can I rent a flat or other accommodation with my girlfriend?
- Am I allowed to "live" in said flat while working remotely with the US branch?
- If I apply for a long-term visitor visa (2/5/10 years), must I leave every 6 months?
- If so, how long must I remain out of the UK before re-entry?
- Will staying in the UK on a visitor visa damage my chances when applying for a work permit?
- Can I transition from a visitor visa into a work permit?
I do not plan on staying in the UK permanently, only to spend time with my partner while she finishes school. Once she is done (1-2 years time), we will return to the US. During that time, I will need to rent. Hotels will be a financial impossibility for that amount of time.
Finally, to clarify:
- I will be paid in US dollars, not in British Pounds.
- I will be working remotely as an employee of the US branch and act as liaison with other employees in the UK and neighboring European area.
- I will not be seeking permanent residency.
- I will return to the US after my girlfriend has completed her degree
- I would like to minimize time spent away from her.
- I do not wish to anger the Home Office and risk being banned from the UK.