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Tier 5 Temporary Worker - Creative and sporting visa

If you wish to apply for a visa in this category then our team at Hunter Stone Law will be able to guide and assist you throughout every step of the process. In order to qualify for this visa you would have to meet the requirement of the relevant section of the Immigration Rules. However we have attempted to simplify the requirements below.

 You can apply for a Tier 5 (Temporary Worker - Creative and sporting) visa if:

  • you’ve been offered work as a sports person or creative worker
  • you’re from outside the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland
  • you meet the other eligibility requirements

A creative worker is someone who works in the creative industry, eg an actor, dancer, musician or film crew member.

Obtaining Sponsorship

You need to be sponsored - ie have a certificate of sponsorship from a licensed employer - before you can apply to come to the UK to work.  The work you do in the UK must relate to the work of your sponsor organisation.

You can come to the UK for a maximum of up to 12 months, or the time given in your certificate of sponsorship plus up to 28 days, whichever is shorter.  You may be able to extend your visa. Your stay must start no more than 14 days before the start date on your certificate of sponsorship.

Eligibility for a Tier 5 (Temporary Worker - Creative and sporting) visa

Your eligibility for a Tier 5 (Temporary Worker - Creative and sporting) visa depends on whether you’re a sports person or a creative worker.

Eligibility as a Sports person

You need to make a significant contribution to your sport at the highest level in the UK to be eligible for this visa.

You’ll also need all of the following:

  • a certificate of sponsorship reference number
  • £945 in savings (£945 from 1 July) - this is to prove you can support yourself and you must have had this in your bank account for 90 days before you apply

You won’t need £945 in savings if your fully approved (‘A-rated’) sponsor has stated on your certificate of sponsorship that they’ll certify your maintenance and that you won’t claim benefits during your stay.

Eligibility as a Creative worker

You need all of the following to be eligible for the creative category:

  • make a unique contribution to the UK labour market, eg you are internationally renowned or are required for continuity
  • certificate of sponsorship reference number
  • be paid the minimum salary as set by Equity, PACT or BECTU
  • £945 in savings - this is to prove you can support yourself and you must have had this in your bank account for 90 days before you apply

You won’t need £945 in savings if your fully approved (‘A-rated’) sponsor has stated on your certificate of sponsorship that they’ll certify your maintenance and that you won’t claim benefits during your stay.

Certificate of sponsorship

You need a licensed sponsor to give you a certificate of sponsorship before you can apply to work in the UK.  A certificate of sponsorship is a reference number which holds information about the job and your personal details. It’s not an actual certificate or paper document.  Your sponsor will give you your certificate of sponsorship reference number.  They must also give you some other information to help you to apply, eg how much you’ll be paid.  You must apply for your visa within 3 months of receiving your certificate of sponsorship.

Changing your sponsor

You must apply again and meet all the eligibility rules if you want to change your sponsor within the same organisation or move to a new organisation. Changing your sponsor doesn’t change how long you can stay in the UK. You can only stay the maximum length of time allowed by this visa.

Multiple entry

Your sponsor needs to give you a multiple entry certificate of sponsorship if you need to leave and come back to the UK as part of the job you are doing.

Multiple jobs when you’re a creative worker

Your sponsor can give you a certificate that covers the entire length of your stay, even if you need to perform at more than 1 engagement. If you’re working for more than 1 sponsor, you can get a certificate from each sponsor. There can’t be a gap of more than 14 days between each job.

Documents you must provide with the application

When you apply, you’ll need to provide:

  • 1 recent passport size colour photograph
  • your current passport or travel document, and your old passports
  • bank statements showing you’ve had at least £945 in savings continuously for 90 days before you apply - this is to prove you can support yourself and you must have had this in your bank account for 90 days before you apply
  • your tuberculosis test results if you’re from a country where you have to take the test
  • a blank page in your passport on which to put the visa.

You won’t need £945 in savings if your fully approved (‘A-rated’) sponsor has stated on your certificate of sponsorship that they’ll certify your maintenance and that you won’t claim benefits during your stay.

Application

If you’re applying outside the UK then you must apply online for this visa.  You’ll need to have your fingerprints and photograph (known as ‘biometric information’) taken at a visa application centre as part of your application.

If you’re applying in the UK then you can only extend your existing visa or switch to this visa if you’re already in the UK.

Extend your visa in this category

You can apply to extend your Tier 5 (Temporary Worker - Creative and sporting) visa.  When making the application you should include any dependants who are on your current visa on your application to extend - including children who have turned 18 during your stay. You should apply before your current visa expires.

Eligibility for extension

You must continue to meet the eligibility rules.  You must be in the UK to extend your visa.

As a Creative worker you can extend your visa for whichever is the shortest of:

  • up to 12 months
  • the time on your certificate of sponsorship plus 14 days
  • the time needed to extend your stay to the maximum of 24 months
  • You must stay with the same sponsor.

As a Sports person you can extend your visa up to 12 months, or the time on your certificate of sponsorship plus 14 days, whichever is shorter.

Switch to this visa

You can only switch into a Tier 5 (Temporary Worker - Creative and sporting) visa if you’re in the UK as a sports or entertainer visitor, and your sponsor gave you a certificate of sponsorship for this visa before you came to the UK.  You should apply before your current visa expires.

Family members/Dependants

You or your dependant must apply to join or remain with you in the UK if they’re from outside the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland.

A dependant is any of the following:

  • your partner
  • your child aged under 18
  • your child aged 18 or older if they’re already in the UK as dependants

You should send your dependant’s application at the same time as yours. Read the guidance on dependant applications before you apply.

Savings to prove that you can support your dependants

You must show that your dependants can be supported while they’re in the UK.

Each dependant must have £630 available to them whether they apply with you or separately. This is in addition to the £945 you must have to support yourself.  You must have proof you have the money, and that it’s been in your bank account or your dependant’s bank account for at least 90 days before you or they apply.

If your dependants applying from outside the UK then your family members must apply online.  They’ll need to have their fingerprints and photograph (known as ‘biometric information’) taken at a visa application centre as part of their application.

If your dependants applying from inside the UK then it’s best to send your dependant’s application at the same time as yours but they can apply at a later date, either by post or in person at a premium service centre.

Please note that members of your family can’t apply in the UK as your dependant if they hold a visitor visa.

What you can and can’t do

You can:

  • work for your sponsor in the job described in your certificate of sponsorship
  • do a second job in the same sector and at the same level as your main job for up to 20 hours per week
  • do a job on the shortage occupation list for up to 20 hours per week
  • work as a sportsperson for your national team and as a sports broadcaster if you’re here under the sporting subcategory
  • bring your family

You can’t:

  • get public funds
  • start your own business