The UK government has introduced new immigration rules to encourage elite businessmen and women to invest in the UK under the Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) route. The changes encourage entrepreneurs from outside the EU to set up or take over existing businesses. The UK government has introduced key changes to the settlement rules, which we will outline in more detail below.New fast-track settlement routes for UK business visa immigration applications.
UK Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visas – Eligibility
Applicants from outside the European Economic Area (EEA) who wish to set up or take over a running business can apply under the Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) route if they can satisfy the Home Office’s requirements. Applicants must have access to a minimum of £50,000. There are different eligibility requirements for those who have access to funds in excess of £200,00 available to them. Applicants must be able to support themselves financially, as they would not be eligible to access public funds and should ensure they meet the English language requirements before making an application. Under the Tier 1 (entrepreneur) route applicants will not be allowed to engage in business activities which are not directly related to their chosen business. Where an Applicant wishes to work alongside someone, they can form an entrepreneurial team.
Fast-track ILR settlement under Tier 1 Entrepreneur Route
Entrepreneurs who have invested in the UK may be eligible to apply for settlement status (Indefinite Leave to Remain) in the UK, after 5 years of continuous leave in the UK. Entrepreneurs who wish to qualify for leave to remain must satisfy paragraph 245DD of the Immigration rules. Settlement under this route does not allow Applicants to combine their Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) leave with any of the other categories. Applicants are free to travel under the Tier 1 route but should note the Home Office’s unforgiving rules in respect of absences from the UK during each of the 12 months of the continuous period. The Home Office will not hesitate to refuse an application where an Applicant has been absent for more than 180 days in any one year of the continuous period.
Accelerated Settlement via an Entrepreneur Visa Application
The UK government has acknowledged the importance of welcoming foreign businesspeople into the UK and in response has introduced an accelerated route to settlement. This route encourages Non-EEA businesspeople to invest in the UK and in return they could potentially receive settlement status (ILR) in the UK within 2 or 3 years depending on the growth of their business. It is clear the government is content in allowing applicants who significantly contribute towards the growth and development of the UK economy to settle permanently in the UK. UK government immigration minister Damian Green has previously said:
Entreprenuers and investors can play a major part in our economic recovery and I want to do everything I can to ensure that Britain remains an attractive destination for them.
An applicant who sets up a new business can qualify for accelerated settlement if they can show that their business has had a minimum income of £5 million directly from their business in the first 3 years of their Tier 1 (entrepreneur) visa. The accelerated settlement may also be exercised by applicants who have taken over an existing business, they must show an increase of £5 million in the gross income as a result of business activity
Making a successful application for Accelerated Settlement via the UK Tier 1 Entrepreneur route
Our team of experienced and professionally qualified solicitors and barristers will be able to guide you through the process step by step and limit the possibility of failure by complying with the strict letter of the law. Please always call us for a telephone case assessment even if you wish to consider other advisers.
Our Immigration Experts are able to give specialist legal information and advice in this area of law. To contact one of our Immigration Solicitors or Immigration Barristers please complete our legal case assessment form and we will get in touch or call us now on 0845 8622 529 for a free telephone assessment and free case assessment.
If you wish to consider your options, please call our Immigration Team so we can assess your matter and if necessary advise you of the next steps you should take in a consultation.
We are based in the legal epicentre of London, just across the road from the Royal Courts of Justice in order to ensure we get the best results for our clients. We are minutes away from the Immigration and Asylum Tribunal, the Royal Courts of Justice and other central London courts.
If you need professional legal advice about applying for accelerated settlement please contact us for a case assessment on 02071830570. You can also reach us via our contact form.