The UK Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa allows the holder to start a business or control an already existing business in the UK without the need for a UK work permit. They will therefore not require an offer of employment by a sponsor based in the UK. The investment essential to obtain this visa is comparatively lower than the Investor’s Visa and in a few cases where the investment is higher than £200,000; applications for the visa are expedited. This Entrepreneur Visa is a potential route to permanent settlement in the UK and even spouse and dependents may accompany the visa holder. Unmarried partner, spouse or any dependent children are entitled to come to the UK and obtain education, healthcare and seek employment.
Applicants for this visa are eligible to switch to another category of Tier 1 Visa if they can fulfill the requirements of the new category. However, candidates cannot switch to a Post Study category. The Entrepreneur Visa is granted for an initial period of 3 years but it can be extended for a period of three years upon the expiration of the 2 years. This extension is granted based on the performance of the business and the original criteria of the visa.
Extension of Entrepreneur Visa
This visa is initially granted for a period of 3 years and can be further extended by 2 years, provided the applicant meets all the visa requirements which are as follows:
- The applicant must have invested a minimum of £200,000.
- The applicant must be self-employed or actively engaged in the business and should have been registered in the company.
- The applicant must be continuing with the business while applying for the extension.
The extension does not require the applicant to meet the other requirements, such as English proficiency, that were compulsory on first application. They will however need to show that their business requires two full time employees or two part time employees who can fulfill the number of hours of two full time employees. This is not only required at the extension stage but also on first application. If the entrepreneur has not hired any additional personnel in the initial stages, then it is likely that their extension application will be declined.
Maintenance (Entrepreneur visa)
Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa applicants are required to meet the maintenance criteria of the visa to ensure that they can financially support themselves and any dependents whilst in the UK. Applicants must provide documentary evidence to prove they are able to support themselves without any recourse to public funds in case they do not have any income in the initial stages of their stay in the UK.
Applicants should note that if their funds drop as little as £1 below the necessary amount, their application will be rejected. The maintenance amount required for application is as follows:
1) £2800 needed for the main applicant
2) £1600 needed for dependent of applicant such as spouse
The £200,000 that is required to apply under this visa category cannot be used to fulfill the maintenance criteria but is in addition to the maintenance amount.
English Language Proficiency
English language proficiency plays a major role in this visa. Without this ability, the candidate’s application is unlikely to be successful. The language requirement is worth ten points and the applicant will need to provide one of the following as proof of their English Language skills:
1) That they have studied and completed a degree course that was taught in English.
2) They are a national of a country in which English is the main language.
3) Successfully completed an English language test at level C1 as outlined by the Council of Europe’s Common European Framework for language learning.
Correct documentation must be submitted with all applications. This visa will enable the applicant to live and work in the UK without the necessity of a Work Permit.
Successful visas can be extended based upon the performance of the business.
Please contact one of our representative at Asher Tomar Solicitor Visas today for free assessment.