There is a new name given to the Exceptional Talent visa category – it will be called the Global Talent route under Tier 1 from 20th February 2020 onward. This will replace the Exceptional Talent route. This category is mainly targeted for individuals in the fields of Science, Engineering, Digital Technology and Humanities with the aim of improving key areas of the UK economy academically.


This route is has come under criticism due to its severe strictness and restrictions. It is often difficult for an applicant to execute the requirements to be successfully eligible for this category, paired with a limited number of endorsing bodies for the endorsement process involved with this visa.


How different is Global Talent to the Exceptional Talent?


The Global Talent route will not have any limitation or cap on the number of applicants or individuals entering in the UK under this criteria, however there will be a designated shortlist of the endorsing bodies. These bodies will only be able to recommend individuals but only the most promising and talented ones will be accepted for this type of visa. It is aimed at a higher pool of applicants compared to the Tier 1 Exceptional Talent.


Are there any benefits of this category at all?


These visas will be managed by the Home Office as well as designated endorsing bodies such as the UK Research and Innovation Agency (UKRI). The aim is to ensure that suitable and eligible candidates are quickly assessed and fast-tracked by those qualified to assess their credentials rather than immigration officials. This route had been designed to attract the most talented and promising professionals in the field of science, mathematics and culture, who wish to enter the UK on the merit of their academic skills and experience.


This route had been designed to encourage not only the talents from the scientific community such as scientists, mathematicians, engineers and researchers to relocate to the UK, but also for the talents in the fields of arts and culture, including film, fashion, television, architecture and design.


This is a unique opportunity that UK employers must be on the look out for and take advantage of, as it is going to be an alternative to hiring a skilled migrant under the Tier 2 (General) visa category. Migrant workers under this category will not require a special or different sponsorship at all from the Tier 2 Sponsor, therefore it is a rather straightforward process to swap or switch in-country to this route. This saves on costs and immigration health surcharge as well.


Objective and Benefits of the Global Talent route


The main basis of this route is to encourage a greater range of talents to apply under the route as such, the route offers considerable flexibility to the candidates compared to the other UK immigration categories:


  • There is no minimum salary requirement threshold to be met
  • There is no English requirement to be met
  • This route also leads to the settlement after 5 years (or 3 years if qualified) in the UK
  • The dependants can also join the main applicant
  • This route also allows in-country extension and switch over to other categories in the UK



Is the Procedure for the application simple?


The process for this application is somewhat similar to the Exceptional Talent route, whereby the applicants must obtain an endorsement letter from one of the Home Office designated bodies relevant to their professionalism. Some examples are Tech Nation, Royal Society, The British Academy, UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) The Royal Academy of Engineering and Arts Council, England.


These endorsing bodies will have to assess the application and endorse them upon their satisfaction of the documentation and evidence provided in support of the application, this can be made use of at the time of making the application once the endorsement process is successfully completed and endorsed with a letter or certificate.


This category will invite skilled and talented professionals to the UK, hopefully bettering the economy.


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