Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa
The Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa UK is used by people who want to start their own business in the UK. You can also apply for this visa if you want to move to the UK to run a business that is already up and running.
Those who want to go this route must be actively involved in running the business (or businesses) in the UK. It gives chances to people who want to start a business on their own, in a partnership, or as a UK-registered company. To get a Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa, you must get a total of 95 points and meet all the other requirements set out in the Immigration Rules. You can get points if you have at least £200,000 (or £50,000 if you are a graduate entrepreneur) in the bank.
Who needs a Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa?
To be eligible for a Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa, the applicant must be a citizen of a country that is not in the European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland and have plans to invest the specified amount of money in a business in the UK.
Also, the applicant must have full access to at least 50,000£ and up to 200,000£ in investment funds that are set aside for a UK business.
What is the difference between UK Tier 1 and UK Tier 2 visa?
|Differences||Tier 1||Tier 2|
|Purpose||To attract exceptionally talented business owners and inventors||For skilled workers like engineers, accountants, etc to fill job vacancies in the UK job market|
|Validity of visa||3.5 years||5 years|
|Visa approval rate||Low||Above average|
|Benefits||Education for childrenSponsorship rights for relatives and friendsGlobal pioneer recognitionDirect pathway for British citizenship||Access to NHS for 5 yearsEligibility for UK Citizenship|
|Process Time||2 weeks||3 weeks|
How to apply for Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa?
You must apply for a Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa from outside the UK, more specifically from your home country, three months before you plan to travel. You will have to submit your application online through the UK government’s website. There, you will have to give some basic information about yourself and why you want to visit the UK, as well as upload scanned copies of your original documents.
If this is your first trip to the UK, you will need to make an appointment at the nearest application center, UK embassy or consulate in your home country. There, you will need to give your biometric information and a photo of yourself.
If a person is already in the UK with a valid visa and wants to:
Endorsing bodies must be able to demonstrate a proven track record of supporting UK entrepreneurs. However, a new organisation which has been set up by another body (with a proven track record) will also be eligible.
Endorsement bodies will determine the validity of a business idea through three measures:
- The applicant needs to demonstrate that they have a genuine and original business plan which meets a new or existing market need, and that the idea will provide benefit to the British workforce and economy
- Applicant needs to prove that they have all the necessary knowledge, skills and market awareness to successfully run the business
- The applicant will also need to show that there is potential for growth and job creation
What are the Required Documents for the Innovator Visa?
The documents which you need to provide will differ depending on the circumstances of the applicant and their application.
The following documents will be required with any Innovator Visa application:
- Current passport or other valid travel identification
- B2 English language test pass certificate/evidence (if applicable)
- Evidence of investment funds
- Bank statements showing at least £945 in savings in your bank account for 90 consecutive days before you apply
- Tuberculosis test results if you’re from a country where the test must be taken
Innovator Visa Cost
The cost of the Innovator Visa depends on the particular nature of the application.
|Who?||Standard Application||Extend or Switch|
|Citizen of Turkey or Macedonia||£966||£1,222|
|Dependents||£1,021 per person||£1,277 per person|
Applicants will also need to pay for their healthcare surcharge. In most cases, they will need to pay £19.20 for their biometric information to be taken too.
How Long Does it Take to Process Innovator Visa Application?
If you are applying from outside of the UK, you should receive a decision on your application within three weeks. Applications which are made from within the UK can take up to eight weeks to process.
If immigration officials encounter a problem with your application, it will take longer for it to be processed.
The Immigration Advice Service provide expert assistance with UK visa applications. One of our immigration law specialists can help ensure that your application fulfils all requirements and meets the strict Home Office administrative standards, ensuring you have the greatest possible chance of a successful outcome.
Call us now on +8801779127165 for more information.
Can my Family Join Me Under an Innovator Visa?
Certain family members, classed as dependents, will be able to join you in the UK if you receive an Innovator Visa.
The following people will be classed as dependents of the Innovator Visa holder:
- A partner
- A child under 18
- A child over 18, if currently in the UK as a dependent
Applicants will need to prove that they have at least £630 of savings per dependent if they wish to bring them to the UK.
If the dependent is already living in the UK, it is possible for them to switch from the visa they are currently on to become a legal resident as the dependent of the Innovator Visa holder.
For expert guidance on the Tier 1 Innovator Visa, please call us now. CONTACT US
Tier 1 Entrepreneur ILR job creation requirement
If you started a new business or businesses or put money into an existing business, you must have created the equivalent of two full-time paid jobs for at least two people who meet the Immigration Rules’ definition of settled workers at the time they start working for you. Every job must have been around for at least a year.
A single job doesn’t have to last for 12 months in a row. For example, it could be open for 6 months in one year and 6 months in the next, as long as it’s the same job with the same title (different jobs that have existed for less than 12 months cannot be combined together to make up a 12 month period).
Jobs that were made during a previous leave period can be used in an application for settlement if they have been kept for at least another 12 months during the most recent extension.
If jobs that were needed during a previous leave no longer exist, then 2 new jobs will need to be created and be in place for at least 12 months during the most recent extension.
All relevant UK laws, like the national minimum wage and the working time directive, must be followed.
If the COVID-19 pandemic has made it hard for you to run your business, you don’t have to hire at least two people for 12 months in a row. Instead, you must hire someone for a total of 12 months. This can be done by giving them different jobs in different months, as long as all of them add up to 2 full-time jobs.
Your employees’ time off under the UK Government’s furlough scheme can still count toward the 12 months, as long as they were paid at least 80% of their normal salary during that time.
If your visa expires and you haven’t been able to hire staff for 12 months, you may still be able to stay for another 2 years as long as you’ve created at least 2 jobs for locals and haven’t been able to meet the normal requirements because of the pandemic.
If you were given a covid-related extension of leave before, you will need to show that you created two full-time jobs in the past 12 months on top of the job creation requirement for settlement. For example, if you rely on having created two full-time jobs for settled workers that existed for 12 months during your most recent leave, you will also have to show that two full-time jobs existed for another 12 months. These jobs can be the same ones, as long as they will be around for at least another 12 months.
The requirement to create jobs can be hard to understand. You might want to talk to an immigration lawyer as soon as possible to make sure you can meet the requirement.
Tier 1 Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) for Entrepreneurs:
If you have lived in the UK as a Tier 1 Entrepreneur for 5 years straight, you can apply for ILR through the Tier 1 Entrepreneur route.
As a Tier 1 Entrepreneur, you can apply for accelerated ILR after 3 years if you have created at least 10 full-time jobs for people already living in the country. You may also be eligible for accelerated settlement after 3 years if your UK business made at least £5 million in gross sales in the last 3 years. If you put money into a business that was already running, your services or investment must have led to a net increase of £5 million in gross income from business activity over a three-year period, compared to the three-year period right before you got involved with the business.
You can fill out an application for a Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa ILR up to 28 days before you meet the requirements. Your qualifying period will be the three or five years right before the date you apply for settlement or the three or five years right before the date a decision is made on your settlement application, whichever is better for you. Getting help from an immigration lawyer will make sure that your Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa ILR application is sent at the right time.
Residence requirement for a Tier 1 Entrepreneur ILR settlement application
In order to get indefinite leave to remain (ILR) as a Tier 1 Entrepreneur, you can’t have been away from the UK for more than 180 days in any 12 month period during your qualifying 3 or 5 year period.
For any times you were out of the UK while on leave under the Rules in place before January 11, 2018, you couldn’t have been gone for more than 180 days in each 12-month period that ended on the same day of the year as your Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa ILR application. The Home Office will look at a rolling 12-month period for any time spent outside of the UK during a period of leave given under the Rules in place since January 11, 2018.
In either case, the Tier 1 Entrepreneur ILR residence and absence requirement will not be met for the days spent traveling to or from the UK.
Tier 1 Entrepreneur ILR settlement application processing times
If you are a Tier 1 Entrepreneur and you use UK Visa & Immigration’s standard service to apply for indefinite leave to remain, you should get a decision within 26 weeks of the date you submitted your ILR application. At the moment, Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa ILR applications are not given priority by the Home Office. But we’ve heard that Tier 1 Entrepreneur ILR applications will soon be processed in 30 days.
Indefinite Leave to Remain as a Tier 1 Entrepreneur Tier 1 Entrepreneurs: Applying for Accelerated Settlement after 3 Years in the UK Entrepreneur Visa Success Stories
Applications for Tier 1 Entrepreneur ILR settlement from outside the UK
As a Tier 1 Entrepreneur, you can’t apply for ILR from outside the UK, unfortunately. Applicants for Tier 1 Entrepreneur ILR can only do so from inside the UK.
UK Entrepreneur visa How Tahmidur Rahman Remura Wahid immigration lawyers can help with an ILR settlement application
The Immigration Rules are very strict about the documents that must be submitted with an ILR application for a Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa. An immigration lawyer can be helpful if you want to make sure that your application looks good and is correct from a legal point of view.
Most people agree that Tahmidur Rahman Remura Wahid Lawyers are one of the best immigration firms in the Bangladesh, UK and US for Tier 1 Entrepreneurs. Our immigration barristers and immigration lawyers work hard to help entrepreneurs. Their work has been recognized by the Investment Migration Council and the Investor Support Network of the Department of International Trade.
Our team of immigration lawyers has helped all kinds of business owners get permission to stay in the UK indefinitely before. Whether you started a new business in the UK or put money into an existing one, our barristers know exactly what you need to do to get a Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa ILR and will help you understand the complicated rules and policies of the Home Office.
We’re proud of being easy to talk to and quick to understand and meet our clients’ needs. We are a team of very driven immigration lawyers who are committed to giving entrepreneurs clear and reliable advice about immigration as part of a professional and friendly service.
Start-up Visa Eligibility
Applicants for the Start-up Visa do not need a specific amount of funds to invest in their business. This is the biggest difference between the Innovator Visa and the Start-up Visa.
Those who meet the following criteria could be eligible for the Start-up Visa:
- At least 18-years-old
- From outside the EEA and Switzerland
- Must have endorsement for their business idea from an approved body
- Must have a B2 level of English as set out by the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (unless exempt)
- Has personal savings of at least £945 for 90 consecutive days before they apply
What do I Need to Know About the Start-up Visa Business Proposal Endorsement?
Anyone who wishes to apply for a start up visa must have their business idea endorsed by an authorised body.
The idea must be endorsed by an authorised body that is either a UK higher education institution or a business organisation which has a history of supporting UK entrepreneurs.
In order for the business proposal to be considered, it must meet the following conditions:
- New idea. Cannot join or invest in a business that is already trading
- Innovative. The business idea must be original and different from anything else on the market
- Viable. Potential for growth
Which Documents do I Need to Provide in a Start-up Visa Application?
The main required documents for a Start-up Visa are identical to the Innovator Visa, apart from evidence of the investment funds.
Applicants will need to provide:
- A current passport or other valid travel identification
- Bank statements showing that you’ve had at least £945 in savings in your bank account for 90 consecutive days before you apply
- Proof of B2 level of English (unless exempt)
- Tuberculosis test results if you’re from a country where you have to take the test
Any documents which are not in English must be translated by an accredited translator.
Start-up Visa Application Processing Time
In most cases, the Home Office will process Start-up Visa applications within three months. If the application is made from outside the UK, the decision should be reached within three weeks.
Start-up Visa Application Cost
|Who?||Standard Application||Extend or switch|
|Citizen of Turkey or Macedonia||£308||£438|
|Dependents||£363 per person||£493 per person|
As with the Innovator Visa, applicants will also need to pay for the healthcare surcharge and for their biometric information to be taken.
Can my Family Join Me Under a Start-up Visa?
If your Start-up Visa application is successful, certain family members can join you in the UK as dependents.
A dependent family member can be:
- Your husband, wife or partner
- A child under 18
- A child over 18 if they’re currently residing in the UK as a dependent
If your family is coming with you to the UK, you must have at least £630 more than the standard £945 to support them there.
Dependents can apply from inside or outside the UK. As part of the application, dependents will have to give biometric information like fingerprints and a picture.
What is the Investor Visa?
The Investor Visa is a slightly different type of visa for people who have a lot of money to put into a business in the UK.
The main requirement for this special visa is that the person applying must have at least £2,000,000 to invest.
A standard application for an Investor Visa costs £1,623. The Investor Visa is good for three years and four months, after which it can be renewed.
The terms of the Investor Visa are better than those of most UK visas. Investor Visa holders may be able to get British settled status after just two years of living in the UK if certain conditions are met.
- Can apply to settle after two years if you invest £10 million
- Can apply to settle after three years if you invest £5 million
- Can apply to settle after five years if you invest £2 million
Can I Switch to the Innovator Visa from another UK Visa?
It is possible to switch to the Innovator Visa from the following UK Visas (provided you meet the eligibility criteria for the visa):
- Start-up visa
- Tier 2 Visas
- Visitor Visa (if applicant is in the UK to acquire funding and a supporting letter from an endorsement body)
- Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur Visa
- Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa
Bear in mind that you will need to have received an endorsement for your business idea from an approved body in order to be eligible.
An applicant can remain in the UK until a decision has been made on their Innovator Visa application, as long as they applied before the expiration of their current visa.
Can I Switch to the Start-up Visa from another UK Visa?
Yes, it is possible to switch to the Start-up Visa from certain other UK visas.
- Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur)
- Any Tier 2 Visa
- Tier 4 (General) Student Visa
- Standard Visitor Visa. (Applicants will need to get a supporting letter from an endorsing body to prove they’re looking for funding)
Keep in mind that if you switch from the Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur) Visa to the Start-up Visa, the time you have already spent under the Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa will count toward the two years of the Start-up Visa.
The Home Office will take up to eight weeks to process a request to switch to a Start-up Visa.
How Long Can I Stay in the UK with an Innovator Visa?
With an Innovator Visa, you can stay in the UK for up to three years. At the end of the three years, you can apply for a three-year extension of your Innovator Visa.
After living in the UK legally for five years with an Innovator Visa, you can apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain.
After living in the UK for a year with ILR, you can apply to become a British citizen.
How Long Can I Stay in the UK with a Start-up Visa?
You can live in the UK for up to two years if you have a Start-up Visa. The Start-up Visa can’t be extended like the Innovator Visa can. If you want to stay in the UK for longer than two years, you will need to apply for a different visa.
Can I Still Apply for a Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa or Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur Visa?
The Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa and the Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur Visa are no longer available.
But if you are still legally living in the UK on a Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa, you can still switch to a different visa (which was given before April of 2019).
You can still switch from the Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa to the Innovator Visa or Start-up Visa, and in some cases, you can still apply for an extension of the Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa.
Also, time spent in the UK with a Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa or a Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur Visa counts toward the minimum time requirements for Indefinite Leave to Remain and British citizenship.
If you need support with your visa application, you can contact us at our offices in Dhaka, London or New York.
Hire the best Immigration law firm in Dhaka:
The best immigration lawyer in Bangladesh works for Tahmidur Rahman Remura. We have long-term experience helping our local and expatriate clients get work permits, permanent residences, and visas all over the world. When processing visas for clients, the immigration law firm in Bangladesh looks for a number of things. Such as following the rules when it comes to documents, processing, and keeping in touch with the Bangladesh passport offices regularly.
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If you already have a Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) visa
You can still apply: