The UK entrepreneur visa category (Tier 1) is for business persons who would like to establish a business in the UK or join and invest into an existing business.

Tier 1 entrepreneur visa applicants are required to satisfy the general requirements associated with the Tier 1 visa.

To submit a successful application you must be able to satisfy the following requirements:

  • A minimum investment of £200,000; or
  • Have access to £50,000 from a registered capital firm regulated by FSA, or UK entrepreneurial seed funding competitions (endorsement from UK TDI) or UK Government for specifically establishing a business; or
  • Hold a Post Study Work visa and have access to £50,000; and
  • The sum must be held in a regulated bank account; and
  • The money must be disposable in the UK.

Please note that those candidates applying for a tier 1 Entrepreneur visa may not seek or undertake paid employment in the UK. This type of UK visa service is issued only to people who will be starting or assuming control of a UK-based business.

If you are applying to switch your status from a Post Study Work Visa to Tier 1 Entrepreneur using the lower funds requirement of £50,000, you will need to be working in the business you set up at the time of application.

Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa extension

To qualify for an extension to a Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa an applicant must satisfy the following criteria.

  • Applicants must have invested, or had invested on their behalf a minimum of £200,000 / £50,000 in a UK business.
  • Applicans must (within six months) have registered with HMRC as a self-employed person, registered a new UK business with the applicant as a director, or registered as a director of an existing UK enterprise. This is unless the applicant applied based on a Tier 1 Post Study Work Visa.
  • At the time of the extension application, the applicant must be engaged in activity within this business.

It is also a necessary requirement when applying for a Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa extension that the applicant can demonstrate that they have created positions of employment for people with UK settled status. For a new business this means that an aggregate of two positions, full time or equivalent, must have been created with each lasting for at least one year. In cases where an applicant has taken over control of an established UK business, their investment and presence in the company must have created two positions similar to those outlined above.

Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR)

The government has an accelerated process for qualifying for ILR whereby Tier 1 Entrepreneur migrants will be able to settle in the UK more quickly if they create 10 jobs or turnover £5 million in a three year period.