UK Business Visas

This visa category have been set up to encourage foreign participation in the UK business sector, whether by investment, entrepreneurship or by allowing individuals to enter the country.

Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) visa

The Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) visa encourages migrants to either set up, take over or actively run businesses with the potential for growth and success.

Non-European applicants are graded on a points-based system and successful application is dependent on scoring a minimum of 95 points.

Points are awarded for access to investment funds, the ability to pass an approved English language test and the ability to maintain a reasonable standard of living.

All business proposals for the UK need to be seen as viable and the Home Office will take following into account:

  • Relevant market research
  • The financial viability of the submitted business plan
  • The background of the applicant concerned

Applicants usually have to show evidence of available funds of around £200,000, however a recent modification to the scheme now allows two persons to make up the investment amount as an Entrepreneurial Team (i.e. perhaps contributing £100,000 each).

Families of all the team members under this scheme are permitted to stay in the UK.

You may stay in the UK for a maximum of three years and four months under this visa. You can also extend the visa for another two years if you are already in this category, or for three years if you are transferring from a another visa category.

If you remain in the UK for five years you will be able to apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR).

All applicants under this scheme must create employment for local workers in the UK and, unlike other visa classes, absences of up to six months per year are permitted without affecting the applicants’ ability to acquire ILR.

Tier 1 (Investor) visa

This visa has been designed for high-net-worth migrants who wish to live and invest a substantial sum of their wealth in the UK.

This category offers a route to residency in the UK if you do not have a claim through family ties and do not require employment. You must have access to a minimum of £2 million to be able to apply.

Investments must be held in one or more regulated financial institutions, such as Government Bonds or in the trading stock of active UK-based companies.

This visa allows you to stay in the UK for up to three years and four months with the ability to extend the visa for another two years.

You can apply for ILR after staying in the UK for five years.

If you have more investment funds available, you will be able to apply for ILR in less than five years. An investment of £5 million will allow you to apply for ILR after three years, and an investment of £10 million allows you to apply after two years.

Business Visitor visa

This visa facilitates business-related travel to the UK. As the name implies, it is for short term visits only.

This category is suitable for a wide range of purposes: academic visits, attending business meetings, allowing film crews on location, etc. It is mainly used by people working for multinational companies outside the UK who wish to come to the UK for short-term training.

If you have entered the UK on a Business Visitor visa, you can stay for up to six months, extending to one year if you are an academic.

Contact us if any of these visas seem like the right option for you, or if you would like to speak to a Visa Consultant.

Other UK immigration services

Want to know more? Read about other UK Visas: