Tier 1 (Investor) Visa
Applicants under the Tier 1 (Investor) category are high-net-worth individuals who wish to make a substantial financial investment in the UK.
In order to qualify for a Tier 1 (Investor) visa, applicant must:
- Have at least £2 million of their own, under their control, held in a regulated financial institution and disposable in the UK; and
- Have opened a bank account with a UK regulated bank for the purpose of invetment.
Under this route applicant will be exempted from the English language any maintenance (funds).
Successful applicants will be initially granted for three (3) years four months (if applying from overseas) or three (3) years (if applying within the UK) which can be extended leading to Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR). They will have free access to public schools, and National Health Service. Eligible dependants may also be able to work or study without any restrictions.
As an intensive, the UKBA introduced an accelerated route to UK settlement for the main applicant and their dependants. Applicants who are investing £10 million will be eligible to settle in the UK after (two) 2 years; with £5 million investment will be eligible to settle in the UK after three (3) years; and with £2 million investment will be eligible to settle in the UK after 5 years.
- How many days am I allowed to stay outside UK to apply for ILR?v
In order to meet the continuous residency requirement, applicant should not be outside UK for more than 180 whole days in any of the five consecutive 12 month periods, preceding the date of the application for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR). The specified continuous period is counted backwards from the date of the ILR application.
For example, if the date of application is 1st December 2013, the 12 months period would start from 1st December 2013 to 31st December 2012 and every consecutive year counting backwards.
- Rights of Dependantsv
Dependants (including children under 18 years of age or husband, wife, civil partner, unmarried partner or same-sex partner) will be eligible to live and stay in the UK with the main applicant. They can live and work in the UK without any restrictions. They will be granted leave in line with the expiry date of the PBS migrant’s (or main applicant’s) leave.
Dependants will have the following conditions attached to their leave:
- No recourse to public funds;
- Registration with the police, if applicable;
- No Employment as a Doctor or Dentist in Training
- How much do I have to invest?v
Applicants must have invest at least £2 million of their capital in the UK by way of UK Government bonds, share capital or loan capital in active and trading companies that are registered in the UK.
- When do I need to invest the funds?v
Applicants are required to invest at least £750,000 (if visa granted before 6th November 2014) or £2million (if visa granted after 6th November 2014 of their capital within 90 days of their ‘specified date’. The ‘specified date’ depends on how they were granted their visas:-
- If visa applied from overseas, then the ‘specified date’ is either the date of the entry clearance issued or the date of applicant’s entry to the UK (provided the applicant has evidence to the entry); or
- In case of visa applied, within the UK, the ‘specified date’ is the date when the visa was issued.
We specify the type of investment we consider, so that money is invested in ways that help to stimulate growth in the UK as directly as possible. You must have invested 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 companies that are registered in the UK. You may include investment held in foreign currencies.
We will check that you made the full investment required within 90 days of your specified date. The specified date refers to the date that you entered the route.
You (all investors) must also show that the minimum investment (£750,000) was maintained at that level throughout the period of your leave (from your specified date). We do not intend to restrict you to keeping the same investments that you made on entering this category, but you must keep the same level of investment.
- Where can I invest the money?v
As a guidance, an applicant can invest the money into Direct cash investment to be used by the business; or Share capital; or Director’s loan as long as it is unsecured and subordinated in favour of third-party creditors; or Unsecured loan or Third-party creditors.
- Can I invest in a property?v
Applicants whose visa was granted before 6th November 2014 cannot invest in companies mainly engaged in property investment, property management or property development. This requirement prevents investment in companies whose main function is to own or manage land or buildings. It does not prevent investment in, for example, construction firms, manufacturers or retailers who own their own premises.
Property purchased in the UK will not be accepted as evidence for an initial application, but may be accepted as evidence of the balance of funds for an extension application.The balance of funds is any further money necessary to bring the investments up to £1 million. If the investments in the is in between £750,000 and £1 million, applicant must provide evidence of the balance of the funds.
Major assets in the UK, such as unmortgaged property, may be taken into account for the balance of funds, provided that they do not make up more than £250,000 of the £1 million investment sum required.
Applicants whose visa was granted after 6th November 2014 cannot invest in property.
- Conditions of Stayv
Applicants will have the following conditions attached to their leave:
- No recourse to public funds;
- Registration with the police, if applicable;
- No Employment as a Doctor or Dentist in Training, unless:
- They have obtained a primary degree in medicine or dentistry from a recognised UK;
- They do not have any condition restricting such employment.
- No employment as a professional sportsperson (including as a sports coach).
- What is my immigration status while my application is pending?v
If applicants submit their application before their authorised stay ends, their existing immigration status will continue until their application is decided, even if the decision is not made until after the end of their permitted stay. Applicant can continue to work until their case is decided if the conditions of their existing leave allow them to do so.
- Biometric Requirementv
Foreign nationals from outside the European Economic Area making certain applications to the Home Office have to apply for a biometric residence permit. This applies to both postal applications and applications made in person (known as ‘premium applications’). The biometric residence permit is a residence permit which holds a migrant’s biographic details (name, date and place of birth) and biometric information (facial image and fingerprints), and shows their immigration status and entitlements while they remain in the UK. This also means that a UK visa will no longer be stamped in applicant’s passport and all applicants will be issued one of the new Biometric visa cards instead. These cards look very similar to a (pink) UK driving license except they have a microchip on the back.
Applicants who wish to extend their stay in the UK by post, the Home Office will send them a letter asking them to enrol their biometrics after the Home Office have received their application. Applicants will be able to enrol their biometric information one of the Post Offices offering this service across the UK using their walk-in service.
Applicants who are submitting their application in person can do this at one of the Public Enquiry Offices by using the premium service. Applicants will enrol applicants’ biometric information at the same time as making their application.
For application submitted overseas, the applicants have to provide their biometric enrolment at one of the Visa Facilitation Centres. Successful applicants will receive a 30 day ‘vignette sticker’ in their passport instead of a vignette with the full grant of leave. This 30 day visa will be the date they indicated as their intended travel date in their visa application. Applicants will be required to collect their BRP from the Post Office branch detailed in their decision letter within ten days of arrival in the UK. The Post Office branch is linked to the postcode that they submitted in their visa application. The BRP card can then be used as proof of right to work, study and access public services in the UK.
- Immigration Health Surchargev
The Immigration Health Surcharge (IHS) was introduced by the Home Office on 6th April 2015. People (non-EEA) coming to the UK for more than six months have to pay this health surcharge as a part of their immigration application towards the National Health Service (healthcare in the UK).
Offshore applicants will have to pay the health surcharge if they are applying for a visa for a period of longer than six months, and onshore applicant will have to pay the health charge for any length of visa.
Applicants will have to pay £150 per year as a student or £200 per year for all other visa and immigration applications. Dependants will usually need to pay the same amount as the main applicant. The exact amount they have to pay depends on how much leave they are granted. They can calculate how much they will have to pay before you apply. If the period of grant applied for is less than 6 months, then half of the yearly amount to be paid and if the period of grant applied for is more than 6 months, then whole year amount is to be paid.
Visa application will not be granted if applicants do not pay the healthcare surcharge or application will be delayed if the right amount is not paid.
Following persons are exempted to pay the IHS:
- Applicants applying for a Tier 2 (Intra-company Transfer) visa and their dependants;
- Applicant under 18 who has been taken into care by a local authority;
- Applicants who arenationals of Australia or New Zealand;
- Dependant of a member of the UK’s armed forces;
- Dependant of a member of another country’s forces who is exempt from immigration control; and
- Applicants of a relevant civilian employee employed by North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) or the Australian Department of Defence in the UK and their dependants.
- Government Fees
Home Office fees for Tier 1 (Investor) Application Postal Super Priority Service Overseas Main Applicant £1,623.00 N/A £1,623.00 Partner & Child (<18years), applying together £1,623.00 N/A £1,623.00 Partner & Child, applying later £1,623.00 N/A £1,623.00
- Processing Timesv
In line with the Home Office service standards for processing UK visa applications, they decide 90 per cent of non-settlement applications within 3 weeks, 98 per cent within 6 weeks and 100 per cent within 12 weeks of the application date.