UK Tier 1 Visa - Arts and Culture

Tier 1 Exceptional Talent - Arts and Culture

Introduction to UK Tier 1 Visa - Arts and Culture

The UK Tier 1 Visa – Arts and Culture is one of the most interesting types of tier 1 visas. It came into place in February 2020 replacing the Tier 1 Exceptional Talent route. With this visa, many applicants may be able to obtain indefinite leave after five years. Those under this UK Tier 1 Visa, are not tied to an employer and can be employed or self-employed as they wish. They can also study on a full and part-time basis. One will also have to be 18 years or over, a leader or potential leader in fields like academia or research, arts and culture and digital technology and so on.


The applicant will have to be endorsed by a Home Office endorsing body. The body that endorses the Arts and Culture Exceptional Talent visa is the Arts Council England. The Arts Council England will have to approve the applicant before they can apply for a visa. It is important that the applicant reads the guidance from this specific endorsing body in detail and include all the information needed. The endorsement fee is £456.

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Visa Process and fees

Once the applicant of UK Tier 1 Visa – Arts and Culture, has been endorsed, the applicant will then be able to go through the visa process. There is no English language or financial requirement. Most applicants will need confirmation of endorsement, a valid passport and a tuberculosis test result if from certain countries.

Standard applications made inside the UK should be processed within 8 weeks and those outside the UK should be processed within 3 weeks. Visa fees for in-country and overseas applicants are £152 and £97 if one is from certain countries. If the applicant is including their partner or children in their application, they will each need to pay £608. This is on top of the endorsement fee. The applicant will also need to pay the health surcharge fee which is usually £624 per year.

Arts and Culture

Qualifying for indefinite leave to remain (ILR)

This is an attractive route for migrants because they can obtain ILR five years. If the applicant was endorsed under the ‘exceptional promise’ criteria for Tech Nation or Arts Council England, they will need to spend a continuous period of five years in the UK before being eligible.

 Applicants for settlement under this route do not need to demonstrate that they are still endorsed by the relevant endorsing body. The Home office will usually be notified by the endorsing body if one was no longer endorsed. The Home office will then carry a check of its own.

The applicant must demonstrate that they have earned money in the UK during their last period of permission in the UK tier 1 visa Arts and Culture, in which they were previously endorsed on. They will need to show that money was earned. The applicant may have been employed or self-employed. Because each applicants’ circumstances are different, there is no specified list of evidence that this requirement is met.

One other advantage of this route is that the applicant can combine time spent in other categories like Global Talent or Innovator, Skilled Worker, T2 Minister of Religion, T2 Sportsperson or UK Tier 1 visa Migrant with the time spent in the UK as an Arts and Culture migrant to meet the qualifying period for ILR.

The applicant must meet the qualifying unbroken continuous residence period required by their route lawfully in the UK. One must not have been outside the UK for more than 180 days in any 12 months.

This is also the other point where one must demonstrate sufficient knowledge of the English language and take the Life in the UK test.

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While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information provided in this article, it does not constitute legal advice and cannot be relied upon as such. Each legal case and issue may have unique facts and circumstances, as a result legallex does not accept any responsibility for liabilities arising as a result of reliance upon the information provided. For further help and guidance, you can always rely on and seek advice from our experienced lawyers.

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