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Global Talent Arts and Culture Visa Guidance - Part 1

The Global Talent (Arts and Culture) visa is designed for artists, performers and creative practitioners who wish to live and work in the UK. To apply for this visa, an applicant must be professionally engaged in producing outstanding performed, presented, distributed or internationally exhibited work, and show regular professional engagement in their field in the 5 years leading up to the date of application.   

In this post we look at the application process for a Global Talent (Arts and Culture) visa and the documents that are required in support of a Global Talent (Arts and Culture) visa application.  In our next post we will look at which artists, entertainers and support staff are eligible to apply for a Global Talent (Arts and Culture) visa.

This visa route has two subcategories: Exceptional Talent and Exceptional Promise. 

To be eligible for the Exceptional Talent route, an applicant must show that they are a leader in their field of work, and they must show a substantial track record in at least two counties. To be eligible for the Exceptional Promise route, an applicant must have shown that they have demonstrated the potential to become a leader in their field of work, and they must show a developing track record. This only has to be in one country, but can be in more than one.  

The route in which an applicant applies will depend on their level of experience, as well as their capacity to provide the specific evidence needed. 

Arts and Culture Global Talent Visa Application Process

Applying for a Global Talent visa is a two-step process. First, applicants submit their evidence to Arts Council England, which is the endorsing body for arts and culture applications. Arts Council England will consider the evidence and decide whether to endorse the applicant. They will return a decision on endorsement to UKVI within a maximum of 8 weeks. Stage 1 is not an immigration application, so applicants may apply from within the UK or elsewhere, and may travel freely into and out of the UK while they wait for the decision from Arts Council England. 

If the endorsement application is successful, the applicant then makes an immigration application to UKVI for the visa. This stage 2 application cannot be made from within the UK, but applicants can apply from any other country (this does not have to be a country in which they are resident). 

If the endorsement application is unsuccessful, the applicant can submit an endorsement review via UKVI. The applicant cannot submit any additional evidence for review, and the Arts Council will simply reconsider the evidence previously submitted. The Arts Council will return a decision to UKVI within 3 weeks. 

If the endorsement review is also unsuccessful, an applicant is free to apply again. However, they will have to pay the full application fee for each new application. The application fee for the stage 1 endorsement is currently £456, and the application fee for the stage 2 immigration application is £152. 

Applicants for a Global Talent visa can choose how long they wish their visa to last, up to a maximum of 5 years. While in the UK with a Global Talent visa, individuals can be employed, self-employed, or the director of a company, but there is no requirement to do these, nor any requirement for an individual to inform the Home Office about their work in the UK. An applicant can also apply to bring their partner and/or children to the UK as dependants on a Global Talent visa. 

There is no minimum salary requirement in this route, nor any language requirement. 

Both the Promise and Talent subcategories are routes to settlement in the UK. The Promise visa allows an individual to apply for settlement after 5 years, and the Talent visa allows an individual to apply for settlement after 3 years. 

Documents Required for an Arts and Culture Global Talent Visa Application

Applicants submit evidence to Arts Council England, the endorsing body which will decide if the applicant meets the requirements of the Global Talent visa.

In both the Talent and Promise routes, applicants must provide three letters of recommendation, of which: 

  • Two must be from well-established organisations acknowledged as experts in the applicant’s field; 
  • The third can be either from another well-established organisation, or an individual who has recognised expertise in the applicant’s field;
  • At least one must be from an organisation that is based in the UK. 

The letters must describe how the applicant would benefit from living in the UK, and the contribution they could make to cultural life here. They should also provide details of any future professional engagements in the UK. 

As well as the three letters of recommendation, applicants should include evidence of at least two out of the three required categories: media recognition, awards, and proof of performances/exhibitions/international distribution. 

All applicants may submit a maximum of ten pieces of evidence. 

The evidence required in order to apply in each route can be compared in the table below. 

Exceptional Talent

Exceptional Promise 

Media recognition
Must provide evidence from at least two countries (which can include their country of residence) of two or more examples of significant media recognition for their individual work.  The evidence must provide a detailed critique, review or evaluation of the work.  Must provide evidence from one country or more (which can include their country of residence) of at least two examples of recent media recognition for either their individual work, or their work as a contributor. The evidence must provide a detailed critique, review or evaluation of the work. 
Awards
Must provide evidence of 

  • winning, or 
  • significantly contributing to winning,

an international award for excellence. 

Must provide evidence of 

  • winning, or 
  • significantly contributing to winning, or 
  • being nominated/shortlisted for, or 
  • significantly contributing to being nominated/shortlisted for,

an international award for excellence. 

Proof of performances/publications
Must provide evidence from at least two countries (which can include their country of residence) of proof of appearances, performances, publications or exhibitions considered internationally significant in their field, or evidence of extensive international distribution and audiences for the applicant’s work. Must provide evidence from one country or more (which can include their country of residence) of proof of appearances, performances, publications or exhibitions recognised in their field, or evidence of international distribution and audiences for the applicant’s work.

Contact our Immigration Barristers

For expert advice and assistance with a Global Talent Arts and Culture visa application, contact our immigration barristers on 0203 617 9173 or complete our enquiry form below.

SEE HOW OUR IMMIGRATION BARRISTERS CAN HELP YOU

To arrange an initial consultation meeting, call our immigration barristers on 0203 617 9173 or fill out the form below.

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