Complete information about UK immigration Tier 1 Investor visa
UK Tier 1 Investor Visa - An introduction
The Tier 1 (Investor) visa is meant for business individuals who want to move to the UK, with or without their family. Only a few hundred of these visas are granted each year in this category. You need to invest £2 millions in the UK, in order to qualify for this visa.
The Tier 1 (Investor) visa category is valid for the main applicant as well as all his/her immediate family members, including spouse and children under the age of 18.Initially, Tier 1 investor visa is granted for three years and four months and can then be extended for another two years, by providing evidence that an investment of at least £ 2 million has been made in the UK according to the visa requirements.
You don’t have to show any specific English language ability.
There are many choices to make investment in the UK like; UK Government bonds, share capital or loan capital in active and trading companies, registered in the UK.
Eligibility (Visa Requirements)
In order to qualify for Tier 1 Investor visa, you must:
have at least £2,000,000 investment funds to invest in the UK.
be 18 or over to apply for this visa
be able to prove that the money belongs to either you or your spouse or partner
have opened a bank account in the UK
be holding investment funds in one or more regulated financial institutions
free/fully authorized to spend those funds in the UK
In order to qualify for this investor visa, you need to note the following points aboutyour claimed funds:
You must have money of your own, under your own control, held in a regulated financial institution, and you must be free to invest in the UK funds not less than £2 million.
This money may be held overseas at the time of application, or it may already be in the
You may rely on money that is owned either jointly with, or solely by, your husband, wife, civil partner. However, you must have unrestricted right to transfer and dispose of the money and you must have permission from your husband, wife, civil partner, to have control of this money in the UK.
You must provide the evidence of your relationship and the permission to use the joint funds given in the section on supporting documents.
If the money is not held in pounds sterling, you must convert its value into pounds sterling on the application form. The conversion will be checked using the exchange rate shown on the Oanda website on the date on which the application was made.
You may use, as evidence of funds, investments made in the UK within the 12 months immediately before the date of the application, provided they are held in a UK regulated financial institution.
You may not use assets or possessions such as property as evidence of your funds for Tier 1 (Investor visa) investment.
In all cases you or you and/or your husband, wife, civil partner, must be the beneficial owner of the funds and not holding the investments on behalf of anyone else.
No maintenance funds are required under this tier one UK visa.
Source of investment funds
If you have not held the funds for 3 consecutive months before the date of the application,
you must also provide evidence of the source of the funds. They will contact the source of
these documents to confirm the information as necessary.
However, the following sources of funds can be considered, if the specified evidence shown:
• Deeds of sale
• Evidence from a business
• Divorce settlement
• Award or winning
Funding from another third party
You cannot use funds to show in the UK Tier 1 Investor Visa from a third party (excluding your husband, wife, civil partner)
UK bank account
You must have opened an account with a UK regulated bank for the purposes of investing not less than £2 million in the UK.
You must provide an original letter, issued by an authorized official of a UK regulated bank, on their official letter-headed paper.
Applying for the Visa
Follow the following steps to apply for this visa:
1. Prepare your documents
When you apply you’ll need to provide:
A current passport or other valid travel identification
Your tuberculosis test results if you’re from a country where you have to take the test*
A Police Charcter certificate from any country you have stayed in for a total of 12 months or more over the last 10 years
Evidence of the investment funds available to you (please see above for details)
Documents regarding your marital status and your children
In case you are using your husband's/wife's/civil partner's money (full or partial) to prove your ability to meet the investment fund criteria, you must provide:
A confirmation statement from your partner confirming that he/she will allow you to control the funds in the UK
A letter from a legal adviser stating that the declaration is valid
NOTE: You’ll need to provide a certified translation of any documents that aren’t in English or Welsh.
If you are applying as a team, both applicants will need above documents (though the proof of the investment funds will remain the same for the both).
*You will need to have a tuberculosis (TB) test if you’re coming to the UK for more than 6 months and are resident in any of the listed countries.
You will be given a chest x-ray to test for TB. If your test shows that you don’t have TB, you will be given a certificate which is valid for 6 months from the date of your x-ray. You will need to add this certificate to your UK visa application.
2. Apply online for Tier 1 (Investor) Visa
You will have to apply online for this visa. For this you will have to get yourself registered to apply for the visa. In case you are already registered (you have applied previously), then you need to simply login. In both cases, as the next step, you have to apply online. Click here to go to their official website to apply for the UK visa.
3. Pay the Healthcare Surcharge
You will need to pay the healthcare surcharge as part of your application.
In case you are making an immigration application online, then you pay the healthcare surcharge as part of the application process. You have to complete the payment and return to the online immigration application in less than 30 minutes. However if you are making an immigration application at a premium service centre, then you may pay the surcharge when you book an appointment. However. you will have to pay the healthcare surcharge by debit or credit card only.
4. Pay the Visa Fee
The visa fee for the main applicant (if you are applying online or by post) is £1,561 /- and £1,561 /- for each dependents. All visa fees are nonrefundable in case your visa application has been processed. You will have to pay the visa fees by debit or credit card only. You pay this visa fee as the part of your online visa application process. So keep your credit card (open to make online transaction) ready before you apply for the visa.
5. Go for Biometric for the Rest of the Visa Process
You’ll need to have your fingerprints and photograph taken at a visa application centre as part of your application. For this you will need to book an appointment as part of the online visa application process. You have a choice of having an appointment for biometrics at a visa centre close to you, out of the given choices. You need to present a hard copy of the visa application (submitted online) along with all supporting documents, when you go for biometrics.
Please keep in mind you can book an appointment for biometrics at a visa centre ONLY after you have paid visa fee in your online visa application.
7. After you apply
Wait for a reply from the British High Commission / British Embassy. You can be notified both by e-mail and the phone. In most of the cases, you are called for a visa interview to the nearest British High Commission / British Embassy. In this interview, you can be asked detail questions regarding your previous work and immigration history (if any) and also about your proposed business plan.
Here is what you can and cannot do on this visa:
You can invest £2,000,000 or more in UK government bonds, share capital or loan capital in active and trading UK registered companies
You or your dependents can work or study
You can apply to settle after 2 years if you invest £10 million
You apply to settle after 3 years if you invest £5 million
You cannot invest in companies primarily engaged in property investment, or direct property related businesses.
You cannot get public funds
You also can’t work as a doctor or dentist
How long the visa processing takes
Depending upon how well-prepared your application was and from which country you are applying, the visa processing can take 3 weeks.
How long the visa lasts
You can come to the UK with a Tier 1 (Investor) visa for a maximum of 40 months.
You can apply to extend your visa if you:
have at least £2,000,000 under your control in the UK
have invested those funds in UK government bonds, share capital or loan capital in active UK companies
invested this sum within 3 months of your ‘investor start date
Make sure that your declared funds meet the exact criteria for Tier 1 Investor Visa, before you apply.
Make sure this amount is transferable to the UK.
Always get an idea of the security and output of your funds to be invested in the UK by a professional.
Always get an assessment of your case for a certain visa class even before making any decision.
Try to use the services of a professional immigration consultant before applying for any step of the visa process. This is because if you make a big mistake in your application, no one can help you after you have lodged this application.