How to Apply for UK Artist Visa – Global Talent
Are you an artist or entertainer looking to work in the UK? If so, in this article, our immigration solicitors look at UK visa options for artists and the global talent artist visa route.
UK Online and London-Based Immigration Solicitors
UK work visa options for artists and entertainers
Visa options for artists and entertainers depend on the nature of your job and visa requirements. For example, whether you want to fly into the UK to promote your latest film or book, go on tour with a band, or work in the UK on a medium to long basis in the creative sector.
The main artist visa options are:
- A creative visitor visa or permitted paid engagement visitor visa
- A temporary work visa as a creative worker
- The skilled worker visa where you need an employer with a sponsor licence to sponsor your employment
- The global talent visa for artists and creatives
Call our immigration solicitors on 0203 959 9123 or contact us online for advice and information on artist visa options. We can help you whether you are an artist, entertainer, or creative, or if you are an employer with a sponsor licence to sponsor skilled worker visa holders, an agent, or an event organiser.
The artist visa under the global talent visa route
The global talent visa provides an entry clearance route for individuals with exceptional talent or promise in one of several specified fields. One of those is the field of ‘arts and culture’.
The eligibility criteria for an artist visa under the global talent visa route are that you:
- Are aged 18 or over
- Have been endorsed for the visa by the Arts Council England or PACT (film and TV) or you have been awarded a prize that is included in the prize list contained in Appendix Global Talent: Prestigious Prizes
- Have a TB certificate – this is only necessary if you come from a country where a TB certificate is required to enter the UK
- Meet the general entry clearance requirements
The good news for global talent visa applicants is that you do not need to meet the English language requirement or sit an English language test which is part of the eligibility criteria for many UK work and business visas.
Global talent visa endorsement
The global talent artist visa application process involves 2 stages: endorsement by Arts Council England and then approval of your visa application by the Home Office.
Endorsement is mandatory unless you are a prize winner of one of several specified prizes or awards. The Arts Council England can endorse applications for artist visas in the field of:
- Visual arts
If you are not sure if you would fit into one of the above categories or would like to discuss an artist visa application, call our specialist immigration lawyers on 0203 959 9123.
Once you have received your endorsement you have 3 months to submit your application to the Home Office for the artist visa and the Home Office will process the second stage of your artist visa application.
Endorsement by the Arts Council England
To secure endorsement for an artist visa by Arts Council England you need to
- Be a professional who has been regularly engaged as a professional practitioner in your artistic field within the last 5 years and who is engaged in producing work of outstanding quality and
- Have had your work performed, presented, distributed, or exhibited internationally with a substantial track record in at least 2 countries if you are applying for a visa based on your exceptional talent. If you are applying on the basis of your exceptional promise, you need to show a developing track record in at least 1 country
Your endorsement application will need to be supported by 3 letters of recommendation. The immigration rules on artist visa recommendation letters are quite complicated and depend on the nature of your application. For advice on the best type of recommendation talk to our individual immigration solicitors on 0203 959 9123.
Switching to an artist visa under the global talent route
You can apply to switch to the artist visa from within the UK provided you are not currently in the UK on (or were not last granted) a visitor visa, short-term student visa, parent of a child student visa, seasonal or domestic worker visa, or if you were given leave to remain in the UK outside the immigration rules. If you fall within 1 of those categories you can apply for an artist visa if you make your application from outside the UK.
If you are a creative who works internationally, it is important to note that you can make your artist visa application, or switch to this visa, from any country outside the UK if the immigration rules mean you can't apply from within the UK. You don’t need to return to your home country or to your country of nationality to make your visa application.
Length of the artist visa
The artist visa can last for up to 5 years but many applications are for a shorter period to cover specific projects in the UK.
How can OTS Solicitors help you with your artist visa application?
At OTS Solicitors our immigration lawyers are all experts in the field of individual immigration or business immigration law and have substantial experience in advising on visas for creatives and sportspersons. We understand that busy artists and creatives do not have the time to sort out their visa needs so our specialist immigration solicitors will ensure that you are applying for the best visa to suit your needs and that complies with your timescales.
UK Online and London-Based Immigration Solicitors