Tier 1 Entrepreneur visas can be extended where the applicant meets several key requirements outlined in UK business immigration legislation. Along with fulfilling all necessary requirements to qualify for a Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa, they must also create jobs in the United Kingdom, invest a certain amount of money in their business activities and reside in the United Kingdom for several years.
Most initial Tier 1 Entrepreneur visas are granted for a period of three years, after which an extension may be granted for an additional two years. This ensures the applicant meets the general five-year residency requirement to apply for settled status.
Please note that the success or otherwise of your Tier 1 Entrepreneur extension application will be determined almost entirely on your activities and undertakings throughout your initial three-year period the UK. The following requirements during this time having been outlined by the Home Office:
- You must establish and formerly register or purchase a business in the UK no later than six months after the approval of your visa.
- Minimum investment amounts of £200,000 of £50,000 apply, in accordance with the source of the funds and the applicant’s previous visa status.
- At least two full-time jobs should be created for two settled persons in the UK for a minimum of one year each.
Under the points-based system, the applicant is required to earn a minimum of 75 points to qualify for a Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa extension.
Investment of at least £200,000 (or £50,000 in some cases) = 20 points awarded
Most applicants are required to provide evidence of an investment totalling at least £200,000 in one or more businesses in the UK. In the case of a director’s loan being used to fund the business, a valid director’s loan agreement must be submitted as evidence. In order to avoid complications, it is essential that the date on the director’s loan doesn’t precede the date of the first transaction.
It’s also important to note that the Home Office only considers funds invested during the three years after the initial Tier 1 Entrepreneur application acceptable. All financial records submitted as evidence must be formalised by a registered accountant with recognised supervisory body membership. If the accountant is not registered and/or regulated, the evidence submitted may be deemed unviable.
Moreover, it must be evident that the applicant has made a genuine business investment with the intention of building or taking over and subsequently running a UK business. The source of the funds used to finance the business may also be scrutinised, including who provided the funds, when they were provided and so on.
Registration as self-employed or director of a business = 20 points awarded
In order to qualify for an extension, the applicant must have registered as a self-employed worker or become the registered director of a business no later than six months after entering the United Kingdom with a Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa. Evidence of eligibility under these terms can be provided by way of:
- Self-employment registration with the HMRC; or
- Company house business registration of the new business the applicant is the director of; or
- Registration as a director of an existing business; or
Once again, at least one of these requirements must be fulfilled no later than six months following your formal entry to the UK. This is defined as:
- The date you entered the United Kingdom under the Tier 1 Entrepreneur scheme, where there is evidence to indicate your exact date of entry; or
- The date your entry clearance to the United Kingdom was granted under the Tier 1 Entrepreneur scheme, where there is no evidence of your exact date of entry; or
- The start date of the leave to remain you were granted in all other cases.
Engaged in Business Activity = 15 points awarded
Qualification is also dependent on the applicant demonstrating that they are still involved in business activities at the time of their application. Nevertheless, it isn’t necessary for the applicant’s current business activity to be related to the same business they started or took over under their original Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa. Evidence is simply required that the applicant has engaged in business activity throughout their stay and remains engaged at the time of their application for an extension.
Job Creation = 20 points awarded
The business activities of the applicant must have created a minimum of two new jobs for two settled persons for a minimum of one year. Evidence of job creation can be submitted by way of contracts, pay slips and general evidence of working hours. Please note that the terms and conditions outlined in the employment contracts your employees sign (number of hours, general contractual terms etc.) may affect their viability as acceptable evidence.
In instances where the initial leave was granted prior to April 6, 2014, the applicant for a Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa extension may qualify upon meeting the following requirements:
- Job creation of one full-time position for two years
- Job creation of one full-time position for 18 months and a second for six months
- Job creation of four full-time positions for six months each
Maintenance Requirements for a Tier 1 Entrepreneur Extension Application
Maintenance refers to the available finances the applicant must both have and provide evidence of, in order to qualify for a Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa extension. In the vast majority of instances, the Home Office requires the applicant to have a minimum of £945 in personal savings held for at least 90 consecutive days at the time of their application.
Other Important Information
As you will have already proven your English language skills to qualify for a Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa, there is no requirement to submit further evidence when applying for an extension.
If you have any dependants who intend to remain with you for the duration of your extension, it is essential that they are mentioned/included in your application. This is particularly important where any child dependants reached the age of 18 years during your initial state.
Individuals under the Tier 1 Entrepreneur scheme are forbidden from seeking conventional employment of any kind and must not attempt to claim benefits under any circumstances. They may also be required to register with the police and provide evidence of sufficient medical cover for the duration of their stay.
To ensure your case is fairly considered, consult with an experienced immigration specialist prior to completing and submitting your application.
Tier 1 Entrepreneur Extension Lawyers in Luton
The UK Home Office is becoming increasingly selective when granting both initial Tier 1 Entrepreneur visas and subsequent extensions. It’s therefore essential to ensure that your application is submitted with complete and compelling evidence to support your case. As even the slightest errors and oversights could compromise your eligibility for an extension, we strongly recommend seeking professional legal support.
Whether planning ahead or already in the midst of a Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa extension application, we can help. Aristone Solicitors understands the complexities of business immigration applications and the importance of facilitating an agreeable outcome. We’d be delighted to provide you with an obligation-free consultation, during which we’ll discuss your case and create an appropriate plan of action.
Contact a member of our trained legal team today for more information.