- Immigration Appeals
- Civil Partners
- Family Members
- Tier 1
- Entrepreneur Visa
- UK Investor Visa
- Tier 2
- Student Cases
- Long Residence
- Human Rights
- Bail and Detention
- Employer Services
- Sponsor Licenses
- Immigration to other countries
- Other Immigration Categories
- Immigration Guidance Training
- Visiting the United Kingdom
- Entering the UK as an Investor
- 2nd Citizenship & Passport Options
UK Entrepreneur Visa
London Immigration Lawyers – UK Entrepreneur and Business Visas
We feel that our business immigration lawyers are the best there are at smoothly advising on UK Entrepreneur visas of all types.
Why Choose Westkin for your UK Entrepreneur Visa?
Results - We will ensure that you will obtain the visa, if you can obtain the documents we ask you to. Guaranteed.
Speed – We are able to turn around applications quickly, so our clients can do what they do best – run world class businesses.
Contact – We can liaise with banks and lawyers to ensure the correct supporting documents are obtained, both in terms of format and content.
We provide templates to the banks of exisitig clients to ensure UKBA regulations are met every time. If need be we can arrange introductions to banks, where the staff have experience assisting with Entrepreneur applications.
We can also arrange introductions to accountants who are fully experienced in Entrepreneur Visas. They can even advise on choice of business, staffing and location as well as business takeovers.
Next Steps – Please contact Mr Hateem Ali or Mr Amir Zaidi for a no obligation discussion of the issues in person.
Please look over the resources below.
How does the UK Entrepreneur visa work? - A Summary
In order to get the visa, you would need initially show that you had 200,000 pounds in a regulated bank account and that money was available in the UK. (or the lower 50,000 for those on Post Study Work.)
Once the visa was granted, certain tasks such as registering the business would need to be made within 6 months of the visa being granted the candidate entering the UK.
The investment would need to be made within 3 years of the visa being granted. A major advantage of the UK immigration entrepreneur category is that the 200,000 (or the lower 50,000 figure set out above) investment once made does not have to be kept where it is.
The business can be sold and as long as the immigration authorities are content that the entrepreneur is still in any business, not necessarily the first one, he can extend his visa.
One advantage of the entrepreneur scheme is that candidates do not need to have a business track record or business experience before.
Applicants would get a 3 year UK entrepreneur visa first, then you would get another 2 years as long as the applicant had in fact fulfilled the investment, employment and registration requirements. Our leading immigration lawyers can advise on these immigration requirements upon request.
After this entrepreneurs would get Indefinite Leave and then a British Passport 1 year later, based on the law as it stands now.
The Entrepreneur visa in more detail:
1 – INTRODUCTION
The UK Government created the Entrepreneur category for those who wish to invest in the United Kingdom by setting up or taking over and being actively involved in the running of one or more businesses in the United Kingdom.
It was introduced in June 2008 for business people to invest and create in UK business to the value of 200,000.
Unlike visit visas the Entrepreneur category leads to Indefinite Leave to Remain in the UK and also leads to British Nationality.
2 –THE VISA APPLICATION PROCESS
STAGE 1 – COMING TO THE UK
For this stage there are 3 requirements:
Access to 200,000. These are funds that can be held across multiple bank accounts, held in or outside the United Kingdom or held by the applicant or third parties. What is needed is a letter from a bank confirming the funds are in place at the time of the application. The letter must be in a specified format which changes according to the nature of the case.
Ability in English Language. This must be at IELTS level 4.5 or equivalent. This lower English requirement was introduced in December 2012. Nationals of English speaking counties such as the USA and Australia are exempt. A degree taught in English at Bachelor’s level or Masters Level in any subject should suffice.
Maintenance. You will also need to show that you have, in your own account, enough money to live on. This is deemed to be 3,100 as a minimum balance over the last 3 months prior to the application. The sum is 900 if the application is being made within the UK. The sum is greater if there are dependents and the exact amount is based on the amount of dependents.
1. Can I apply with another person?
Yes, you may apply with one other person using the same funds. The funds must be available to both of you. This is called an Entrepreneurial Team.
2. Can a third party (for example a family member, corporate body or seed investor) provide my funding?
Yes, you may rely on money made available by one or more other people. They will need to confirm that the money is available for you to invest in a United Kingdom business.
3. What is the duration of my visa?
If your application is successful you will be awarded a visa for 3 years and 4 months. If you are applying outside the United Kingdom and 3 years if applying inside the United Kingdom.
4. Can I work during this time?
You can only work in the business you have set up and contract with other businesses. You cannot take on a salaried position with another employer.You can be a freelance, contractor or consultant, just not salaried.
Note that a spouse can take a job full time and therefore careful choice of whom is the main applicant and who is the dependent between a couple is important.
5. Can my family join me?
Yes, you can bring your spouse and children under 18 with you. Other relatives can be allowed on a discretionary basis only if there are compassionate factors.
STAGE 2 – IN THE UNITED KINGDOM
Once the visa has been granted and you have arrived in the United Kingdom, you will be expected to meet the following requirements:
Invest 200,000 in business in the United Kingdom. The investment will not include the value of any residential accommodation, property development or property management. This does not have to be the same sum as the original 200,000 pounds shown at stage 1. The funds must be actually spent as expenses in the United Kingdom in full over the three years.
You must either register as a director of a UK company at Companies House or register as self employed with HMRC within six months of arriving in the UK. This is a mandatory requirement. The company that is set up within the 6 months does not have to be the same company that spent the 200,000.
At the end of three years , you must be acting as a director, or be self-employed in any company.
You must have created the equivalent of two,1 year-long, full-time jobs for people who are settled in the United Kingdom. This can either be 2 persons for a year full time, 1 person for 2 years full time or even 4 persons for 6 months full time and so on.
STAGE 3 – GAINING PERMANENT RESIDENCY IN THE UNITED KINGDOM
Before you can get British Nationality you normally must have held Permanent Residency (known in the UK as ‘indefinite leave to remain’ for one year.
In order be able to gain indefinite leave to remain, the you must have resided on the Entrepreneur visa in the UK for 5 years. (made up of stage 1 and stage 2 above).
You also must not have travelled outside the United Kingdom for more than 180 days (6 months) for every calendar 12 months that you are here.
As seen from the above, indefinite leave to remain is normally gained 5 years after initial entry.
In certain circumstances, you may apply to settle in the UK after 3 years. This faster settlement occurs if EITHER:
(a) You create 10 new full time jobs (instead of the 2 normally required)
(b) You establish a new business that has an income of £5 million over a 3 year period or you have increased the income of an established business by £5 million over a 3 year period.
Whichever route you use, you may apply for British Citizenship one year after living in the United Kingdom.
STAGE 4 – GAINING NATIONALITY
If you would like to apply for British citizenship you may spend on average no more than 90 days outside the UK each year, and no more than 90 days outside the UK in the 12 months before you apply for citizenship.
We are experienced is assisting clients to gain nationality on the basis of discretion even if they have not met all the requirements.
Your family will gain citizenship and before that permanent residency when you do in nearly all circumstances.
NEXT STEPS AND HOW WESTKIN CAN HELP
Westkin undertake the entirety of the visa application process. We offer a complete service and guarantee that our visas are granted every time.
Once the visa is granted we can advise on the permitted investments into the UK on an ongoing basis as required. We can also provide a turnkey solution where we assist with advising on the business documentation required on an ongoing basis. Again this is where required.
If you would like further information about coming to the United Kingdom as an entrepreneur or want to check whether this visa is the correct option for you please contact:
Amir Zaidi or Hateem Ali
T: +44 (0) 20 70167 786
F: +44 (0) 20 7900 6020
Please call us for a no-obligation, no-cost chat or use the enquiry form on the top right side of screen and above. Our best Immigration Lawyers are waiting for your call.
16 Hanover Square, Mayfair
© 2011 Westkin - London Immigration Lawyers