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Ask HN: Did anybody apply for UK Global Talent VISA? How did it go?

Thinking of applying myself but the requirements seem intimidating

3 hours ago

Created a post 51 points @boghy8823

Ask HN: Did anybody apply for UK Global Talent VISA? How did it go?

@te_chris 1 hour

Replying to @boghy8823 🎙

I’ve got the old Tech Nation one - about to finish year 5 next year. I hate the Home Office with all my passion though, £600 a year for this bullshit NHS surcharge is daylight robbery - a ridiculous charge invented by Theresa May to feed the Daily Mail and their braying hordes in 2015. Honestly, tell them to go fuck themselves and move elsewhere.

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@maverick-iceman 57 minutes

Replying to @boghy8823 🎙

What are the advantages of this in a world which is transitioning towards remote work?

The UK has the best and cheapest process to incorporate a company (it takes literally 15 mins and 40£ to form an LTD)

And you can be CEO from everywhere in the world!

Granted the country you are living in might receive your UK LTD bank account informations pursuant the Common Reporting Standard/Global FATCA [0]

That opens a whole lot of considerations because odds are that your home country has a higher corporate and VAT tax rate than the UK or just wants to come after you for paying taxes there while using your native country roads , airports, IT infrastructure and hospitals.

I had to look into this case recently: Swedish entreprenur owning a UK LTD , working (and hiring) remotely within the UK but living in Sweden

Sweden says clearly that doesn't want any part of foreign companies incorporated outside its borders by its own citizens:

[1]"Entities formed/registered/incorporated outside of Sweden (foreign legal entities) are not considered resident in Sweden for income tax purposes, not even if their place of effective management is situated in Sweden"

[0] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Common_Reporting_Standard

[1] https://www.oecd.org/tax/automatic-exchange/crs-implementati...

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@carlsborg 2 hours

Replying to @boghy8823 🎙

If its anything like the prior Tier 1 program, I'd say it would be run very efficiently. (Time between applying to the approval letter == 2 or 3 weeks iirc for me.)

Its certainly one of the most startup-friendly visas out there, and despite the recent football press, the UK is a world class country.

- Mainly there are no earning requirements like the Tier 1 program had, so you can use your time to drive an innovative startup instead of chasing the relatively high (for this geography) earnings on every renewal.

- Indefinite Leave to Remain in 3 or 5 years (this is the equivalent of a Green Card) and passport 2 years later.

- And from the website:

With a Global Talent visa you can:

    choose how long your visa is for, up to 5 years
    be an employee, self-employed and a director of a company
    change or stop doing your job without telling the Home Office
    bring your partner and children with you as your ‘dependants’, if they’re eligible
    travel abroad and return to the UK
- There are no language or minimum salary eligibility requirements.

Bonus advice: Consider a lower cost city Edinburgh, Bristol, Newcastle, Brighton, and chase the startup dream rather than working at larger company.

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@tadkar 2 hours

Replying to @boghy8823 🎙

From an employer’s perspective, I’d be super interested in hearing about the experience of applying for this visa too! Does the UK government make it easy to apply? What are the interviews like? Anything your employer did that made the whole process easier for you?

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@klipt 2 hours

Replying to @boghy8823 🎙

If you can qualify for that, you might also qualify for O1/EB1 visas in the US which gives a fast track to green card.

From what I've heard London has similar high cost of living to Silicon Valley but much lower software engineering compensation, so seems a less desirable place for engineers to work.

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@chrisseaton 2 hours

Replying to @boghy8823 🎙

It’s ‘visa’ not ‘VISA’. Why do so many people think it’s an acronym? It’s just a normal word.

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@qeternity 2 hours

Replying to @boghy8823 🎙

I am on the (since discontinued) Entrepreneur Visa. The Home Office have very odd, bureaucratic rules around things and it can be incredibly difficult to meet the specific requirements as they will accept them. This means bringing in an immigration lawyer to handle the process and these run into the mid single digit thousands per application.

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@robk 9 minutes

Replying to @boghy8823 🎙

I'm in the UK and know this team. Happy to talk over email if any questions. It's undoubtedly a fantastic visa and arguably the best in Europe if a passport asap is your goal. I'd venture nearly any regular reader here can probably meet the criteria and it's definitely meant to not need a lawyer to apply!

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@throwgt 1 hour

Replying to @boghy8823 🎙

> the requirements seem intimidating

Don't be discouraged from applying because of this! The UK parliament published a report stating that the UK gov failed advertising this visa with too stringent requirements [1]. In reality, you definitely don't have to be a Nobel prize laureate to get this visa, especially if you go through the 'Promising Talent' route.

If you apply, the only thing you lose is £450 and some time. Even if you fail with your application, you can always reapply later, again and again, so there are almost no downsides to trying.

> How did it go?

It went well. :) People compare this visa to O-1, but I think it's better because you are completely free to work on whatever you want and you have virtually the same rights as a permanent resident, with the exception of having no access to public funds (e.g., getting unemployment benefits - you are still entitled to accessing NHS though). Compared to the Tier 2 General visa, the terms are amazing and it's worth all the trouble.

What helped me most with my application were my open source work and conference talks. The hardest part was actually obtaining 2 recommendation letters (I believe nowadays you have to provide 3 of them). You need to find someone in a higher position, like CEO or CTO, who will write a letter for you. I was very lucky with this: I sent a random request to a CTO of a rather well-known open source company and to my surprise they were willing to help me. I'm still astonished by this and I can't overstate how amazing open source communities can be.

Other than that, Immigration Boards [2] helped a lot with technical details - there's a dedicated forum about Tier 1 visas, so I'd recommend reading everything about other people's cases.

Lastly, I do recommend applying on your own (without solicitors). The reason is simple: no solicitor will know about your achievements better than yourself! And the bulk of putting together an application is actually listing your achievements, so getting help in this would be a waste.

Happy to answer any other questions you might have, and good luck with your application.

[1] https://publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201719/cmselect/cmsc...

[2] https://www.immigrationboards.com/

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@tuvistavie 1 hour

Replying to @boghy8823 🎙

In general, I'd say UK visa process and cost are quite terrible, to say the least. However, for the global talent, the harder part is to get endorsement, after which it should be relatively straightforward. A friend of mine recently got his through the research route and the process seems to have been quite smooth. I think it took about a month or so. For reference, he is finishing a PhD in a top US university and has a good amount of peer reviewed research.

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