JOURNALISTS AND MEDIA PROFESSIONALS
Every year, many journalists and media professionals travel to the UK in order to cover specific events, either sporting or international, or for longer term assignments in the UK. Whether you are an overseas agency looking to send individuals to the UK, or a UK broadcaster or agency looking to hire a foreign worker, there are immigration options available.
General visa information for journalists and media professionals
In order to undertake activities as a journalist or media professional in the UK, you will normally need to obtain a visa under one of the tiers of the points-based system.
The points-based system has special categories and rules for journalists and other media professionals. In most categories you will need to be sponsored by an employer. The Sole Representative visa category also has a sub-category for employees of an overseas newspaper, news agency or broadcasting organisation being posted in the UK for a long-term assignment as a representative. However, if you are going to be in the UK briefly, or for a single event or activity, a business visitor visa may be more appropriate.
The main immigration routes available to journalists and media professionals are:
- Visit (Standard) Visa for Business
- Employee of Overseas Newspaper, News Agency or Broadcasting Organisation
- Tier 2 (General)
- Tier 2 (Intra-company Transfer)
- Tier 5 (Temporary Worker – Creative)
Media Sector Employees
If your media business wishes to employ a worker from outside the European Economic Area, the employee must obtain, or already have, permission to work. You will be required to check that all your employees have the required immigration permission to work for you in the UK.
The following categories of people have the right to work in the UK:
- British Citizens (This is the only form of British nationality where the holder automatically has the right to work. British Nationals, British Nationals (Overseas), British Overseas Territories Citizens, British Overseas Citizens, British Subjects and British Protected Persons do not normally have the automatic right to work in the UK);
- EEA citizens and citizens of Switzerland;
- Those with the right of abode in the UK;
- Those with no time limit on their stay in the UK; and
- Those with a visa or permission to remain in the UK which permits work (This may be subject to conditions, such as a maximum number of hours to be worked in a week, which must be complied with).
Students may have permission to work, but if they do, this will be limited during term time. Some individuals with applications pending with the Home Office may also have permission to work in the UK. In this case you will need to obtain a Positive Verification Notice from UKVI’s Employer Checking Service.
How our immigration barristers can help
Our immigration barristers provide expert advice to journalists and other media professionals on UK visa and immigration requirements. We assist journalists, editors, presenters, film crew and producers to visit or work in the UK.
We can also assist with
Applications for Visit (Standard) Business Visas
The Visit (Standard) – Business visa is designed for non-EEA nationals who wish to come to the UK for the purpose of undertaking business activities. A Visit (Standard) – Business visa will allow you to stay in the UK for up to 6 months. Within the period for which your visit visa is valid, you may enter and leave the UK multiple times, unless the visit visa is endorsed as a single or dual-entry visa.
Applications for Employee of Overseas Newspaper, News Agency or Broadcasting Organisation Visas
The Sole Representative of an Overseas Business visa category has a sub-category for employees of an overseas newspaper, news agency or broadcasting organisation being posted in the UK for a long-term assignment as a representative.
Applications for Tier 2 General Skilled Worker Visas
The Tier 2 General category is for individuals who have an offer of a skilled job in the UK from a licensed Tier 2 Sponsor. This category includes applicants coming to the UK to fill shortage occupations. You will need to have an offer of employment before applying for a visa.
Applications for Tier 2 Intra-company Transfer Visas
The Tier 2 Intra-Company Transfer category is for existing employees of multinational employers who need to be transferred to their UK branch for training purposes or to fill a specific vacancy. You will need to have an offer of employment in the UK from a licensed Tier 2 Sponsor before applying for a visa and the overseas employer must be linked by common ownership or control to the UK branch.
Applications for Tier 5 Temporary Worker - Creative Visas
The Tier 5 Temporary Worker category is for certain types of temporary worker whose entry to the UK will help to satisfy cultural, charitable, religious or international objectives. You will need to have an offer of a position before applying for a visa.