New Global Talent visa proposed
Earlier this year the Prime Minister announced the intention to introduce a new Global Talent visa designed to attract international talent in STEM subjects (science, technology, engineering and mathematics). If the scheme goes ahead, eligible individuals would be granted three years’ leave to remain in the UK. At the end of three years, they may be able to apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain.
We understand that there would be no minimum salary requirement and individuals will not need a UK job offer before applying (unlike the existing Tier 2 route for skilled workers). Applicants would be able to bring their dependants (spouses/partners and children under 18) to the UK who will have the right to work.
Application fees are yet to be set out but applicants will have to pay the Immigration Health Surcharge.
It is likely that this scheme will effectively replace the existing Tier 1 Exceptional Talent category. The Government has said it is intending to “substantially and radically” expand the Tier 1 Exceptional Talent route and the introduction of the Global Talent visa will be part of this reform. The Tier 1 (Exceptional) Talent scheme has been criticised for being unnecessarily complex and there have been very few applicants.
In light of Brexit and concerns about the number of EEA nationals working in STEM fields, the Government’s proposal has been met with a lukewarm welcome as a possible way to attract the leading talent in these fields. However, the details as to how the scheme will operate in practice are crucial before it is possible to tell how helpful this new route will be to individuals or employers.
Such details have yet to be published and the final outcome may well depend on the results of the forthcoming general election.