The Home Office has announced that it will expand the number of visas available through the Tier 1 (Exceptional Talent) route from 1,000 to 2,000 per year. The Tier 1 (Exceptional Talent) route allows exceptional world leaders and promising individuals to come to the UK and work for any employer or set up their own business. The route leads to settlement after five continuous years.
Applicants must be endorsed by one of the five recognised endorsing organizations to be eligible to apply for the visa: Tech City UK; Arts Council England; The British Academy; The Royal Society and The Royal Academy of Engineering. Each organization has its own selection criteria for the assessment of whether or not an applicant should be endorsed.
The first 1,000 visas available will be allocated equally amongst the five organizations. The additional 1,000 visas will then be allocated according to demand. It is likely that the selection process will involve some type of a priority system based on a filing deadline however further clarification is needed on this to ensure transparency and fairness. It remains to be seen how the Home Office will allocate the remaining 1,000 visas where demand exceeds the number of available allocations.