Immigration for Business
Tier 1 Investor
– For Investors in Business
If you have substantial funds to invest in the UK and you genuinely wish to settle in the UK and make it your home you may apply for entry clearance to enter the UK as investors. Under this category you need not work full time running a business here but may engage in self-employment if you so wish. You cannot however, engage in any other employment in the UK. Prior entry clearance in this category is mandatory.
To qualify as an investor, you must demonstrate that you:
- have money of your own which is under your own control and is disposable in the UK amounting to no less then £1 million; or
- must have a personal net worth of no less than £2 million if you intend to use a loan to finance the UK investment, (only loans from financial institutions regulated by the Financial Services Authority are acceptable);
- intend to invest not less than £750,000 of your capital in the UK by way of UK Government bonds, share capital or loan capital in active and trading UK registered companies (excluding those principally engaged in property investment and investment through deposits with the bank, building society or other enterprise whose normal business includes acceptance of deposits);
- you intend to make the UK your main home;
- you are able to maintain and accommodate yourself and any dependants without taking employment (other than self-employment or business) and without recourse to public funds; and
- hold a valid UK entry clearance for entering the UK in this capacity.
You must be able to demonstrate that you can transfer and dispose of your money freely. With the exception of funds jointly held by an applicant and spouse (both must have unrestricted rights of transfer and disposal), no other person should have a controlling interest in the money.
Disposable in the UK means that all the capital required to qualify must be freely transferable to the UK and convertible to sterling. Specific evidence of this, such as a letter from the bank or authorities concerned, will be required.
Entry to the UK in this category is initially granted for a 3 year period. It is possible to subsequently apply to extend leave in this category for a further 2 years by application to the Home Office. Once you have spent a continuous period of five years in the UK in this capacity, you may be eligible to apply for indefinite leave to remain in the UK provided you have continued to meet the investor requirements.
The UK Border Agency gives priority to investor applications.
Tier 1 Entrepreneur
The aim of this category is to attract outstanding innovators and businessmen whose business proposals will result in economic benefit to the UK. If you have substantial funds to invest in the UK and you genuinely wish to run a business you may be granted entry clearance to enter the UK as an entrepreneur. Under this category You would have to be engaged full time in the running of their business and you cannot, however, engage in any other employment in the UK.
In order to make a successful application:
- You have to prove that you have access to not less than £200,000 -25 points available
- That your funds are held in one or more regulated financial institutions- 25 points available
- The money is disposable in the United Kingdom -25 points available.
The financial institution or institutions that provide confirmation of the funds available to you must be regulated by the home regulator. The home regulator is an official financial regulatory body in the country where the financial institution operates and the transaction was made. This body must be appropriate to the type of financial transaction.
Funds held in the United Kingdom must be held in an institution that is regulated by the Financial Services Authority (FSA). If the funds are not held in the United Kingdom, all of the £200,000 must be freely transferable to the United Kingdom and convertible into pounds sterling. If the funds are held overseas but in an institution that has a presence in the United Kingdom and is regulated by the FSA, then the institution already does business in the United Kingdom and it will not be necessary to provide further evidence of the availability of the funds for transfer to the United Kingdom. If you rely on funds that are held in an overseas institution that is not regulated by the Financial Institution.
- In addition to reaching the 75 points ,you must demonstrate that you have the level of English prescribed in the Immigration Rules and produce evidence of the required funds.
Separate points are given for English language ability (10 points) and the availability of funds for maintenance (10 points)
There are two ways of satisfying the English Language criteria and achieving the points in this section
- Iif you hold an English language qualification equivalent to the Council of Europe's Common European Framework for Language Learning level C1 (approximately IELTS level 6.5, GCSE Grade C) or
- If you hold a degree that was taught in English as confirmed by the UK NARIC database as equivalent to a UK Bachelors degree.
Finally you must be able to demonstrate that you have funds to support yourself and any dependants. For the main applicant this is £2,800 with a further £1,600 needed for each dependant accompanying you or planning to join you within 12 months of your arrival in the UK. These amounts must be held in your personal bank account for a minimum period of 3 months, for which you must show bank statements/other evidence immediately preceding and dated no more than 1 month prior to the date you submit your application. The balance should not fall below the required minimum at any time during the 3 month period. Evidence must be in the form of cash funds. If you wish to rely on a joint account as evidence of available funds, you must be named on the account along with one or more other named individual.
If you are seeking entry in this capacity and you currently live outside the UK an application for entry clearance should be made to their nearest British Diplomatic post.
It may be possible if you are in the UK in certain immigration categories to make an application to change the basis of their stay in the UK to Tier 1 Entrepreneur.
If successful you will be granted permission to enter and/or remain in the UK for a period of 3 years. Before the expiry of this period, an you may apply for an extension for a maximum period of a further 2 years, provided that you continue to satisfy all the necessary requirements. After five years continuous stay in the UK in this category, an applicant can apply for indefinite leave to remain.
If you are looking for information and guidance on UK Immigration for Individuals please follow the link.
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It should be noted that as legal representatives we cannot present Tier 4 applications ourselves as the applicant needs to be present at the Border Agency to provide their biometrics.