What is Tier 5 Creative and Sporting Worker Visa?

Soccer Player Dribbling Between DefendersThe Tier 5 creative and sporting worker visa is designed for those foreign nationals who want to enter the United Kingdom (UK) for the purpose of working or performing as sportspeople, entertainers or creative artists for up to 12 months. The foreign sportsperson must be established internationally at the highest level in his/her sport, and/or the employment must make a significant contribution to the development and running of sport at the highest level in the UK.

Who can apply as a creative and sporting worker?

You must have the following before you apply under the Tier 5 creative and sporting worker visa:

  • a sponsor; and
  • a valid certificate of sponsorship.

You sponsor must obtain an endorsement for you from relevant sport governing body to confirm that you meet the governing body’s requirements. When you apply you are awarded points based on your sponsorship and available maintenance (funds).

You can apply under the creative and sporting worker class if you are:

  • applying for permission to enter the UK (known as ‘visa’ or ‘entry clearance’) under the creative and sporting worker category;
  • applying to enter the UK if you are not required to have a visa and are entering for 3 months or less;
  • already in the UK as a sportsperson and want to extend your permission to stay for up to 12 months;
  • already in the UK as a creative worker who has been here for 12 months or less – you will be able to extend your permission to stay for up to a maximum of 24 months. The job must continue with the same sponsor.
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The entertainers or sports visitors, including for specified festivals who are already in UK cannot apply under Tier 5 creative and sporting worker visa.

However, there is an exception for sports or entertainer visitors already in the UK when your sponsor had given you certificate of sponsorship for Tier 5 creative and sporting visa before you entered the UK. That certificate of sponsorship can be used to switch the visa class otherwise switching is not allowed into the creative and sporting working category.

How long can you stay for?

Sportsperson:
If you are given permission to stay as a sportsperson, you can come to live and work in the UK for a maximum of 12 months, or the time given in your certificate of sponsorship plus 28 days, whichever is shorter.

Sportsperson can only apply to extend the stay to a maximum of 12 months.

Creative worker:
If you are given permission to stay as a creative worker, you can come to live and work in the UK for an initial time of up to 12 months, or the time given in your certificate of sponsorship plus 28 days, whichever is shorter.

You can apply to extend your permission to stay in the UK as a creative worker for up to 12 months at a time, up to a maximum of 24 months. If your extension will take your time in the UK beyond 12 months, the job must continue with your last sponsor.

The maximum stay cannot be extended beyond 24 months in the UK.

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