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Global Talent Visa For The Fashion Industry Talents

While the fashion industry may not be the most widespread in the UK, it does have a very prominent presence in the country. This means that the UK is an attractive location for those who wish to pursue a career in fashion overseas.

If you are part of a business in the UK that has a focus on the fashion industry and you wish to hire individuals from overseas into your workforce, the Global Talent Visa for fashion is a key visa choice. Speak to a legal advisor or lawyer can help get you started on the journey towards hiring migrant workers from overseas into the fashion industry. Call IAS today at +44 (0)333 305 9375 to get started, or send us an email to inquire.

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    Eligibility Requirements For The Global Talent Visa In The Fashion Industry

    Those who wish to apply for a Global Talent Visa in the fashion industry in the UK can do so through two means. These are as follows:

    • Apply as a leader in your field through the ‘Exceptional Talent’ visa.
    • Apply as a potential leader in your field through the ‘Exceptional Promise’ visa.

    To be considered eligible for the Global Talent Visa in UK fashion, you will be required to have been active or working regularly in your field for at least the last five years. To apply as a leader in your field, you will need to provide proof that you are and have been producing work that meets the following criteria:

    • A leader in their field needs to prove they produce work that is exhibited or sold internationally at catwalk exhibitions.
    • A leader in their field needs to prove that their work is well known in a minimum of two countries.
    • A leader in their field needs to show that their work has been judged by the British Fashion Council to be considered outstanding.

    Alternatively, if a person is applying for this visa as a ‘potential leader’ in their field, then their work needs to be proven to be:

    • A potential leader in their field needs to be able to show their work has been exhibited or sold on an international level.
    • A potential leader in their field needs to show that their work has been recognised by leading figures in the fashion industry.

    For advice and help, speak to our specialist immigration team today.

    Required Documents For The Global Talent Visa Application

    As well as meeting the eligibility criteria for the Global Talent route in fashion, applicants will also need to prove certain documentation for their application. These documents include the following:

    • Three letters of recommendation. (These need to be sent in alongside the application.)
    • There should be no more than ten pieces of evidence that show that the applicant has exceptional talent or promise. Every document needs to be two sides of A4 paper or fewer, and all must be relevant for the last five years.
    • A valid passport or relevant travel document.
    • A TB certificate, if required.

    Letters Of Recommendation For The Global Talent Visa

    Applicants for the Global Talent Visa UK fashion route will require letters of recommendation. Every applicant will need to have two letters from established organisations that are considered to be experts in the applicant’s field, and at least one of these two established organisations needs to be UK-based.

    The third letter of recommendation must come from an established organisation or an established person. This organisation or person needs to be considered an expert in the field of the applicant.

    These letters must also meet the following criteria:

    • The letters must be signed by a senior member of the organisation.
    • The letters must be about the Global Talent visa application; it is not possible to use a letter that has been used for anything else.
    • The letters must state how the applicant knows the author of the letters.
    • The letters need to say how the individual will benefit from UK living.
    • They need to show achievements in the applicant’s field and state how they are a leader or potential leader in said field.
    • The letter needs to inform how the individual would contribute to UK culture.
    • The letter needs to explain what the individual’s plans are for future work.

    Aside from these factors, the letter also needs to meet the following requirements:

    • Each letter needs to be dated and typed.
    • Every letter has to be signed by the author of the letter or by someone who is signing on behalf of the organisation that is recommending the individual for a Global Talent Visa.
    • Each letter needs to also have a copy of the CV of the author. Additionally, it could also contain proof of the author’s credentials that will be accepted by the endorsing body.
    • Every letter needs to include contact information for the organisation, including an email address, contact number, registered address, and the logo of the organisation.
    • Each letter needs to be no more than three sides of A4 paper. This excludes the credentials of the author and contact information.

    The Endorsement Route


    For an individual to qualify for endorsement by the British Fashion Council in fashion design, they will need to have a leading designer role in the fashion industry. The individual will also need to be able to show that they have had regular engagement on a professional level in the industry over the previous five years.

    As well as this, the individual will also need to provide evidence that they have professionally engaged in the production of outstanding work that has been exhibited or sold internationally via catwalks or in other exhibitions.

    An individual that applies under the criteria for Exceptional Promise will instead need to show that they have a developing record in one or more countries, as well as having professional engagement in the production of outstanding work that is recognised by leaders in the fashion industry.

    Evidence For Exceptional Talent

    To meet the exceptional talent criteria for endorsement for the Global Talent Visa, an individual will need to provide evidence that they meet at least two of the following professional criteria:

    • The applicant has had international media recognition.
    • The applicant has produced work that has been exhibited internationally.
    • The applicant has obtained international awards or sponsorships.
    • The applicant has made international sales and distributions.

    Proving International Media Recognition

    For the applicant to prove that they have gained international media recognition, they must provide at least two examples of having their work appear in reviews. This could include online or national publications or broadcasts.

    The work shown as proof must come from at least two countries, and it must be judged by the British Fashion Council as being considered ‘significant’. Listings and advertisements do not count as media recognition.

    Proving International Awards Or Sponsorships

    Should the applicant provide international awards or sponsorships for endorsement, they need to provide proof that they have obtained one of the following:

    • Provide proof of winning, receiving a nomination, or being shortlisted for an award.
    • Provide proof of having aided in someone else winning, being nominated, or being shortlisted for an award.

    This could include the following awards:

    • The Fashion Awards.
    • The LVMH Prize.
    • The Elle Style Award.

    To provide proof of this, the applicant will need to provide the following information:

    • Full details must be provided of the award, nomination, or shortlist. This includes information regarding the category and the year.
    • If this achievement was as part of a group, then the involvement of the applicant needs to be evidenced.
    • Evidence must be provided if the person was involved with the named person on the shortlist, nomination, or award if required.

    Proving International Exhibitions And Sales

    If the applicant needs to provide proof of participating in catwalk shows, exhibitions, or presentations, then these must be judged by the British Fashion Council as being “internationally significant” to their select criteria.

    Proving International Sales And Distributions

    Should the applicant choose to provide evidence of international distribution and sales, they will be required to provide proof of a substantial track record via international boutiques and retailers or through their channels.

    To do this, they are required to give the following:

    • Provide the current number of stockists or outlets for the product.
    • Show the number of sales in the top five stockists.
    • Provide a breakdown of sales; this should include dates if the individual is selling through their channels.

    Our expert immigration lawyers can assist with your global talent visa.

    Exceptional Promise


    If the applicant is applying for an exceptional promise for a Global Talent Fashion visa, they will need to provide evidence of their applicability. This means they will need to show proof of at least two of the following:

    • The applicant has gained international media recognition.
    • The applicant has gained support or sponsorship.
    • The applicant has made sales to luxury clients.
    • The applicant has received industry recognition.

    Proving International Media Recognition

    Should an applicant wish to provide proof they have obtained international media recognition, they need to give a minimum of two examples of their work having appeared in reviews. This could be shown online or via a broadcast or national publication.

    In this instance, evidence from social media is also applicable if it is sourced from an account that the British Fashion Council views as being prominent enough. However, applicants cannot include advertisements or listings in this.

    Proving Support or Sponsorships

    If an applicant wishes to provide proof that they have support or sponsorship, they need to provide proof that they have obtained sponsorship or support from schemes by the British Fashion Council or otherwise from similar schemes found outside of the YUK.

    An example of this could be a British Fashion Council scheme such as Newgen, or a scheme that is run by an international organisation similar to this; the Council of Fashion Designers in America would be one of these.

    Other options can include the following:

    • The Sarabande Foundation.
    • The Fashion East Support Scheme.
    • The Centre For Fashion Enterprise.

    To provide proof of this, two things must be provided:

    1. The name of the organisation and associated scheme.
    2. The date that the support or sponsorship was granted.

    Proving Luxury Client Sales

    For an applicant to provide proof of sales from luxury clients, they must give evidence of one or more orders from a boutique or luxury retailer. This could be from the UK or from abroad. The name of the buyer and the date ordered are necessary information to include.

    Proving Industry Recognition

    To give proof of industry recognition, the applicant must supply evidence that their graduating collection was recognised by what the British Fashion Council judged as being ‘leading industry players’. This could include retailers, fashion designers, and brands!

    How To Apply For The Global Talent Visa


    Applying for the Global Talent Visa is very simple. The first step is endorsement, and to do this, the applicant simply needs the relevant documents in place, and once they have these, they can submit and apply.

    Endorsement decisions take around 8 weeks.

    Applicants can apply for their Global talent visa at the same time as they apply for endorsement. Alternatively, applicants can apply for their visa after they have received a confirmed endorsement. However, do not apply for a visa before applying for the endorsement, and be aware that if you apply for both simultaneously and the endorsement is rejected, the visa will be rejected also, and a refund for this will not be received.

    Should the applicant already be in the UK and their permission to stay is about to expire, applying for this visa will extend their stay until a decision is received. The application process will take 3 weeks outside of the UK and 8 weeks for those in the UK.

    Extending The Fashion Global Talent Visa

    For an individual to be granted an extension, they need to have earned money in the UK during their last leave grant. These earnings need to be made in the fashion industry or a field related to the subject matter of your prize if the applicant applied based on the Appendix: Global Talent: Prestigious Prizes. Evidence needs to be provided from an independent, verifiable source.

    Should the applicant have gained entry through endorsement, they must not have had this withdrawn by the body that granted the endorsement.

    For help with applying for a global talent visa, reach out to one of our lawyers today.

    Global Talent To Visa To ILR

    Should the individual satisfy the requirements for an extension and have sufficient English language knowledge, they will be able to apply for ILR (Indefinite Leave to Remain) after they have spent a continuous period of three years inside the UK if they apply under Exceptional Talent.

    However, if the applicant applied under Exceptional Promise, then the length of time spent in the UK for eligibility for ILR is five years.

    How Can IAS Help?

    Understanding eligibility criteria and the application process for exceptional talent and exceptional promise is quite tricky. Many applicants and businesses hiring these applicants require extra knowledge to help ensure the application process goes smoothly.

    If you are a business hiring a Global Talent Visa for Fashion Holders, legal advice can help you support the applicant and even help in the application process to ensure it goes smoothly. Give IAS a call today and get ahead in ensuring the applicant you are hiring gets their visa problem-free.

    Call us today at +44 (0)333 305 9375, or send us a message to get started.

    We offer immigration advice sessions as face to face appointments at our Lagos office, all of our UK offices, or via the phone.

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