Tier 5 (Temporary Worker – Creative and sporting) visa

You must apply for a Tier 5 (Temporary Worker – Creative and sporting) visa if:

You’ll still need to apply for this visa if you’re travelling to the UK from the Republic of Ireland and you’re from outside the EEA and Switzerland.

A creative worker is someone who works in the creative industry, for example an actor, dancer, musician or film crew member.

Sponsorship

You need to have a certificate of sponsorship from a licensed employer before you can apply to come to the UK to work.

The work you do in the UK must relate to the work of your sponsor organisation.

How long it takes

The earliest you can apply for a visa is 3 months before the date you’re due to start work. This date is on your certificate of sponsorship.

You should get a decision on your visa within 3 weeks.

Check the guide processing times to find out how long getting a visa might take in your country.

Fees

How much you pay for a Tier 5 (Temporary Worker – Creative and sporting) visa depends on your situation, where you are and how you apply.

Who you’re applying for Apply (outside the UK) Extend or switch online or by post in the UK Extend or switch in person in the UK (premium service)
You £244 £244 £854
If you’re a citizen of Turkey or Macedonia £189 £189 £799
All dependants £244 each £244 each £854 each

You’ll also have to pay the healthcare surcharge as part of your application. Check how much you’ll have to pay before you apply.

How long you can stay

You can come to the UK for a maximum of up to 12 months, or the time given in your certificate of sponsorship plus up to 28 days, whichever is shorter.

You may be able to extend your visa.

Your stay must start no more than 14 days before the start date on your certificate of sponsorship.

What you can and can’t do

You can:

  • study (for some courses you’ll need an Academic Technology Approval Scheme certificate)
  • work for your sponsor in the job described in your certificate of sponsorship
  • do a second job in the same sector and at the same level as your main job for up to 20 hours per week
  • do a job on the shortage occupation listfor up to 20 hours per week
  • work as a sportsperson for your national team and as a sports broadcaster if you’re here under the sporting subcategory
  • bring your family

You can’t:

Eligibility

Your eligibility for a Tier 5 (Temporary Worker – Creative and sporting) visa depends on whether you’re a sports person or a creative worker.

Sports person

You need to make a significant contribution to your sport at the highest level in the UK to be eligible for this visa.

You’ll also need all of the following:

  • a certificate of sponsorship reference number
  • £945 in savings – this is to prove you can support yourself and you must have had this in your bank account for 90 days before you apply

You won’t need £945 in savings if your fully approved (‘A-rated’) sponsor has stated on your certificate of sponsorship that they’ll certify your maintenance and that you won’t claim benefits during your stay.

Creative worker

You need all of the following to be eligible for the creative category:

  • make a unique contribution to the UK labour market, for example you’re internationally renowned or are required for continuity
  • certificate of sponsorship reference number
  • be paid the minimum salary as set by Equity,PACT or BECTU (except for models, musicians or circuses)
  • £945 in savings – this is to prove you can support yourself and you must have had this in your bank account for 90 days before you apply

You won’t need £945 in savings if your fully approved (‘A-rated’) sponsor has stated on your certificate of sponsorship that they’ll certify your maintenance and that you won’t claim benefits during your stay.

Certificate of sponsorship

You need a licensed sponsor to give you a certificate of sponsorship before you can apply to work in the UK.

A certificate of sponsorship is a reference number which holds information about the job and your personal details. It’s not an actual certificate or paper document.

Your sponsor will give you your certificate of sponsorship reference number.

They must also give you some other information to help you to apply, for example how much you’ll be paid.

Your certificate of sponsorship is valid for 3 months from the date it is assigned to you.

Changing your sponsor

You must apply again and meet all the eligibility rules if you want to change your sponsor within the same organisation or move to a new organisation.

Changing your sponsor doesn’t change how long you can stay in the UK. You can only stay the maximum length of time allowed by this visa.

Multiple entry

Your sponsor needs to give you a multiple entry certificate of sponsorship if you need to leave and come back to the UK as part of the job you’re doing.

Multiple jobs when you’re a creative worker

Your sponsor can give you a certificate that covers the entire length of your stay, even if you need to perform at more than 1 engagement. If you’re working for more than 1 sponsor, you can get a certificate from each sponsor. There can’t be a gap of more than 14 days between each job.