UK Creative Worker Route Changes

Effective May 16, 2024, the UK government updated the sponsorship requirements for the Creative Worker route to reflect changes previously published in the Statement of Changes of March 14, 2024. The principle change is that creative roles no longer need to fall under the Immigration Salary List (formerly known as the Shortage Occupation List).  This is expected to broaden the situations in which this route can be used by employers.

In the new guidance, the sponsor must ensure that:

  • they have complied with the relevant code of practice in Appendix Creative Worker Codes of Practice, if one exists for the role; OR
  • if there is no code of practice, that the role is in the creative industries and is in an occupation code listed in any of the tables of Appendix Skilled Occupations; and that the worker will be making a unique contribution to creative life in the UK.

The Appendix Creative Worker Codes of Practice covers the following seven areas:

  • ballet
  • dancers (other than ballet)
  • performers in film and television
  • performers in opera
  • performers in theatre
  • workers in film and television
  • models in the fashion industry

Occupation codes in Appendix Skilled Occupations include, among others:

  • 3411: Artists
  • 3412: Authors, writers and translators
  • 3413: Actors, entertainers and presenters
  • 3414: Dancers and choreographers
  • 3415: Musicians
  • 3416: Arts officers, producers and directors
  • 3417: Photographers, audio-visual and broadcasting equipment operators
  • 3421: Interior designers
  • 3422: Clothing, fashion and accessories designers.

Those sponsoring a worker who applied for entry clearance or permission before May 16, 2024, and who met the requirements of the Immigration Rulers in force before that date on the basis that their role is in a shortage occupation, must ensure the job was listed in Appendix Immigration Salary List (or its predecessor Appendix Shortage Occupation List) on the date the Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) was assigned.

Erickson Insights & Analysis

Erickson Immigration Group will continue to monitor developments and share updates as more news is available. Please contact your employer or EIG attorney if you have questions about anything we’re reporting above or case-specific questions.