Global Talent visa – summary of upcoming changes

The Global Talent visa caters to leaders or prospective leaders in the fields of science, engineering, humanities, medicine, digital technology or arts and culture.


With the introduction of more restrictive Innovator visa, the Global Talent route has gained popularity as it offers not only freedom of employment in the United Kingdom but also possibility to operate your own business. The other benefits of the Global Talent visa include possibility to settle in the United Kingdom after 3 years of being endorsed as an Exceptional Talent, permission to enter/remain in the UK for up to 5 years on a single application, absence of the requirement to have a confirmed job offer, and fast-track scheme which provides a quicker endorsement. In addition, there is no English or maintenance requirement and there is no cap on the number of eligible individuals who can use this visa route.

When applying for the Global Talent visa, there is a two-part process. The first part includes an application for endorsement, whilst the second part is the visa application itself, subject that the endorsement application being successful.


In the past years there have been a few changes made to this visa route. The latest changes were announced by the Home Office on 22 October 2020. Important to note that applications submitted on or before 30 November 2020 will be assessed according to the current Immigration Rules. Whereas applications submitted on or after 1 December 2020 will be assessed under the new Rules. The new changes, which concern part one of the process, are made to the criteria for consideration of senior appointments and the definition of the types of academic and research roles that qualify under this visa route.


The most noticeable changes concern Digital Technology applicants who wish to be endorsed by Tech Nation. As such, the Key and Qualifying criteria are being restructured whereas a simpler set of mandatory and optional criteria will be introduced.


At present, the prospective Digital Technology applicants are required to provide at least 10 documents showing compliance with minimum one Key and two Qualifying criteria. As of 1 December 2020, leading talent and potential leader applicants will be required to demonstrate compliance with at least 2 out of 4 optional criteria. Most importantly, the criteria regarding Continuous Learning is being removed.

For many years our Immigration Team has successfully assisted applicants with their applications under the Global Talent and its predecessor Tier 1 (Exceptional Talent) visa routes. Please do not hesitate to contact our Immigration Team for assistance and advice in relation to entry clearance or permission to stay in the UK and settlement visa applications under the Global Talent route.


Please note that requirements may vary from case to case based on the nuances of your situation, and the information on this page is not intended to replace legal advice.