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Temporary workers: creative and sporting, charity workers, religious workers, government authorised exchange, international agreement

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Temporary workers - creative and sporting

What is the creative and sporting category?

The creative and sporting worker category is for people coming to the United Kingdom to work or perform as sports people, entertainers or creative artists for up to 12 months.

If you are a sports person, you must be internationally established at the highest level in your sport and or your job must make a significant contribution to the development and running of sport at the highest level in the United Kingdom.

If you are a coach, you must be suitably qualified to do the job.

Who can apply as a creative and sporting worker?

Before you apply under the creative and sporting worker category, you must have:

  1. a sponsor; and
  2. a valid certificate of sponsorship.

Before assigning your certificate of sponsorship, your sponsor must have an endorsement for you from the governing body for your sport, which confirms you meet the governing body's requirements to give their endorsement. The governing body must be recognised by us. Find a list of sports governing bodies. 

When you apply you are awarded points based on your sponsorship and available maintenance (funds).

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

  1. applying for permission to enter the United Kingdom (known as 'entry clearance') under the creative and sporting worker category;
  2. already in the United Kingdom as a creative and sporting worker and want to extend your permission to stay for up to 12 months;
  3. already in the United Kingdom 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 your original sponsor.

The creative and sporting category is not for people who want to come or who are already in the United Kingdom as a entertainer or sports visitor, including for specified festivals. See more about sport and entertainer visitors in business and special visitors.

You can switch in to the creative and sporting category if you came to the United Kingdom as a sports or entertainer visitor, and before you entered the United Kingdom, your sponsor gave you a certificate of sponsorship for this category. You can use the certificate to apply to switch.
Otherwise switching is not allowed in or out of the creative and sporting working category.

You can apply under the creative and sporting category from a country that is not your normal place of residence if you are there doing a job similar to the one you want to come to the United Kingdom to do.

How long can you stay for?

If you are a non-visa national you can come to the United Kingdom without permission to enter (entry clearance) for up to three months, but you cannot extend your permission to stay.

Sports person

If you are given permission to stay as sports person, you can come to live and work in the United Kingdom for a maximum time of 12 months, or the time given in your certificate of sponsorship plus 28 days, which ever time is shorter.

If you are a sports person, you can only apply to extend your stay for 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 United Kingdom for an initial time of up to 12 months, or the time given in your certificate of sponsorship plus 28 days, which ever time is shorter.

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

If you come for nine months initially, you can get an extension to stay for a further 12 months, but this must be with the same sponsor. After that time, you can get a further extension to stay to take the length of your stay up to 24 months in total.

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Temporary workers - charity workers

What is the charity worker category?

The charity worker category is for people coming to the United Kingdom to do voluntary work for charity, which is not paid work.  The work must be directly related to the work of your sponsor's organisation.

Who can apply as a charity worker?

Before you apply under the charity worker category, you must have:

  1. a sponsor; and
  2. a valid certificate of sponsorship.

When you apply you are awarded points based on your sponsorship and available maintenance (funds). (85)

You can apply under the charity worker category now if you are:

  1. applying for permission to enter the United Kingdom (known as 'entry clearance') under the charity worker category;
  2. already in the United Kingdom as a charity worker and want to extend your permission to stay if you have been here for less than 12 months, which is the maximum time you are allowed to stay.

Switching is not allowed in or out of the charity worker category.

How long can you stay?

If you are given permission to stay as a charity worker, you will be able to live and work in the United Kingdom for a maximum time of 12 months, or the time given in your certificate of sponsorship plus 28 days, which ever time is shorter.

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Temporary workers - religious workers

What is the religious worker category?

The religious worker category is for people coming to the United Kingdom to work temporarily as a religious worker. 
Religious workers can do:

  1. preaching, pastoral work and non-pastoral work;
  2. work in the United Kingdom in the same way you are working in an overseas organisation (although your duties in the United Kingdom may be different). The job should be done during a break from your job overseas; or
  3. work in a religious order with community which involves a permanent commitment like a monastery or convent. The work in a religious order must be in the order itself or outside work directed by the order. You can apply if you are a novice whose training means taking part in the daily community life of the order.

Who can apply as a religious worker?

Before you apply under the religious category, you must have:

  1. a sponsor; and
  2. a valid certificate of sponsorship.

When you apply you are awarded points based on your sponsorship and available maintenance (funds). (85)

You can apply under the religious worker category now if you are:

  1. applying for permission to enter the United Kingdom (known as 'entry clearance') under the religious worker category;
  2. already in the United Kingdom as a religious worker and want to extend your permission to stay if you have been here for less than 24 months, which is the maximum time you are allowed to stay.

If you are coming to the United Kingdom for a business visit, for example, you are attending a conference, you can do some preaching and pastoral work as long as you are based overseas and do not plan to work here.

If you are a member of a religious order and studying for a qualification, a formal full-time course of study or training in an academic institution not looked after by the order, you should apply under the student category (tier 4 when it launches).

Teachers working in schools not looked after by their order must apply as a teacher under the sponsored skilled worker category of tier 2.

If your main reason for coming to the United Kingdom is to do preaching and pastoral work, you should apply under the minister or religion category of tier 2.

Switching is not allowed in or out of the religious worker category.

How long can you stay for?

If you are given permission to stay as a religious worker, you will be able to live and work in the United Kingdom for a maximum time of 24 months, or the time given in your certificate of sponsorship plus 28 days, which ever time is shorter. 

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Temporary workers - government authorised exchange

What is the government authorised exchange category?

The government authorised exchange category is for people coming to the United Kingdom through approved schemes that aim to share knowledge, experience and best practice and experience the social and cultural life of the United Kingdom.  This category must not be used to fill job vacancies or to bring unskilled labour to the United Kingdom.

Your sponsor will be an overarching body who manages the government authorised exchange scheme.  This overarching body must have the support of a United Kingdom government department.

Individual employers and organisations will not be allowed to sponsor migrants in this category, even if they are licensed as sponsors under other tiers or other categories of tier 5. 

Any work you do must be skilled which means it must be equivalent to N or SVQ level 3 or above. This is unless you are taking part in the scheme set up as part of the European Union's lifelong learning programme, where you can do vocational education and training at a lower skill level.

You are allowed to stay in the United Kingdom for up to 24 months under this category.

Who can apply under the government authorised exchange category?

Before you apply under the government authorised exchange category, you must have:

  1. a sponsor (the overarching body); and
  2. a valid certificate of sponsorship.

When you apply you are awarded points based on your sponsorship and available maintenance (funds).

You can apply under the government authorised exchange category now if you are:

  1. applying for permission to enter the United Kingdom (known as 'entry clearance') under the government authorised exchange category;
  2. already in the United Kingdom under the government authorised exchange category and want to extend your permission to stay if you have been here for less than 24 months, which is the maximum time you are allowed to stay.

Switching is not allowed in or out of the government authorised exchange category.

How long can you stay for?

If you are given permission to stay under the government authorised exchange category, you will be able to live and work in the United Kingdom for a maximum time of 24 months, or the time given in your certificate of sponsorship plus 28 days, which ever time is shorter.

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Temporary workers - international agreement

What is the international agreement category?

The international agreement category is for people coming to the United Kingdom under contract to do work that is covered under international law, including:

  1. the General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS);
  2. similar agreements between the United Kingdom and another country;
  3. employees of overseas governments and international organisations; and
  4. private servants in diplomatic households.

Who can apply under the international agreement category?

Before you apply under the international agreement category, you must have:

  1. a sponsor; and
  2. a valid certificate of sponsorship.

When you apply you are awarded points based on your sponsorship and available maintenance (funds).

You can apply under the international agreement category now if you are:

  1. applying for permission to enter the United Kingdom (known as 'entry clearance') under the international agreement category;
  2. already in the United Kingdom under the international agreement category and want to extend your permission to stay if you have been here for less than 24 months, which is the maximum time you are allowed to stay.  The exception to this is for those applying as private servants in diplomatic households, or as employees of overseas governments and international organisations only, who can apply for an extension for a maximum of 12 months at a time, up to a total of six years.

Switching is not allowed in or out of the international agreement category.

How long can you stay for?

If you are given permission to stay under the international agreement category, you will be able to live and work in the United Kingdom for a maximum time of 24 months, or the time given in your certificate of sponsorship plus 28 days, which ever time is shorter. 

This is unless you are applying as a private servant in a diplomatic household or as an employee of an overseas government or international organisation only, where you can apply for an extension for a maximum of 12 months at a time, up to a total of six years. 

 

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