The Tier 1 Exceptional Talent category is for foreign nationals who are recognised as leaders in their field (exceptional talent) or recognised as having the potential to become leaders in the future (exceptional promise).

In order to apply for this visa, you will first need to receive an endorsement from an appropriate endorsing body. You can be endorsed in the fields of science, humanities, engineering, the arts or digital technology. The relevant endorsing bodies are:

  • The Royal Society
  • The Royal Academy of Engineering/li>
  • The British Academy
  • The Arts Council
  • Tech City UK

Each endorsing body has its own set of criteria, but in each case you will need a substantial body of work and support from experts in your field. Once you have been endorsed, you will be able to apply for a Tier 1 Exceptional Talent visa.

There is a limit on how many applications can be endorsed each year of 2000. This is split between the different endorsing bodies.

Unlike other Tier 1 routes, you are not required to show they have sufficient funds to support yourself in the UK or have the ability to speak English.

If successful, a visa will be granted for a maximum of five years and four months. You will have a full right to work and can also bring your family members (spouses/partners and children under 18) to the UK.

After spending a continuous period of either three years (exceptional talent) or five years (exceptional promise) in the UK as a Tier 1 Exceptional Talent visa holder, you may be eligible to settle in the UK.