Tier 5 Visa
Tier 5 Visa Overview
The Tier 5 visa allows entry to work in the UK in a number of different circumstances, such as for charity workers, entertainers, diplomatic staff, and sportspeople. Most Tier 5 workers need a job offer from a licensed Tier 5 sponsor in the UK, but people from one of the small number of Countries whose nationals can come under the Youth Mobility Scheme can gain entry without a job offer.
Tier 5 visa categories:
Tier 5 (Temporary Worker – Charity Worker) visa: For workers who have an unpaid/voluntary job offer and a certificate of sponsorship from a UK charity with a valid Tier 5 sponsorship licence. The job taken must be directly related to the sponsor charity’s work.
Tier 5 (Temporary Worker – Creative and Sporting) visa: For very highly skilled workers who have a job offer as a sportsperson or creative worker – such as a musician or actor – in the UK, and a certificate of sponsorship from a UK employer with a valid Tier 5 sponsorship licence. Sportspeople on this visa must be internationally established at the highest level in their sport, and/or their job must make a significant contribution to the development and running of sport at the highest level.
Tier 5 (Temporary Worker – Government Authorised Exchange) visa: For workers coming to the UK through an approved government authorised exchange scheme. This visa allows the worker to do work experience, training, academic research or a fellowship, and to take part in an Overseas Government Language Programme.
Tier 5 (Temporary Worker – International Agreement) visa: For workers who have a job offer that is covered by international law, such as embassy and diplomatic household workers, and a certificate of sponsorship from an organisation with a valid Tier 5 sponsorship licence. This includes workers under the General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) and similar agreements.
Tier 5 (Temporary Worker – Religious Worker) visa: For workers offered a job, such as preaching or work in a monastery or convent, by a religious order in the UK.
Tier 5 (Youth Mobility Scheme) visa: For workers aged 18 – 30 from a limited number of countries who wish to live and work in the UK for up to 2 years. This scheme replaced the Working Holiday visa, though it’s important to note that far fewer people gain entry under the new scheme.
Tier 5 Sponsor Licence
A Tier 5 licence is for skilled workers who want to be employed on a temporary basis.
Tier 5 licences are split into the following sub categories:
- Tier 5 Creative and Sporting – to work as a sportsperson (up to 1 year), entertainer or artist (up to 2 years)
- Tier 5 Charity Worker – for unpaid workers (up to 1 year)
- Tier 5 Religious Worker – for those doing preaching, pastoral and non-pastoral work (2 years)
- Tier 5 Government Authorised Exchange – work experience (1 year), research projects or training, eg practical medical or scientific training (2 years) to enable a short-term exchange of knowledge
- Tier 5 International Agreement – where the worker is coming to do a job which is covered by international law, e.g. employees of overseas governments