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How Can I Get UK Citizenship Through Investment?

Investment in the UK won’t guarantee citizenship for individuals from outside of the EU/EEA, but depending on the amount you invest, it can significantly reduce the time it takes to secure permanent residency. The Tier 1 (Investor) visa route is designed for this precise purpose and enables holders to settle in the UK after only two years. The UK government want to encourage investors to the UK to contribute to the economy and have made the Tier 1 investor route as straightforward and fast as possible.

How long does it take investors to secure UK permanent residency?

This depends on the amount being invested. Under the current immigration rules, Tier 1 investor visa holders can apply to settle (i.e. live permanently without immigration or any other restrictions) after the following period of continuous residence:

  • Two years if you invest £10 million
  • Three years if you invest £5 million
  • Five years if you invest £2 million

Continuous residence is defined as being out of the UK for no longer than 180 days in any 12-month period. After meeting the required period of continuous residence, you can then apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR).

Will I need to extend my Tier 1 investor visa?

This depends on the amount you have invested. Tier 1 (Investor) visas are granted for a maximum initial period of three years and four months. This means that if you have invested £5 million or £10 million, you may already be eligible to apply for ILR. If you have invested £2 million, if you wish to continue to work towards residency, you can apply to extend your visa for a further two years, at which point you can then submit an application for ILR.

For those who applied for an investor visa before 6th November 2014, to be eligible for an extension, you will need to prove you have:

  • at least £1,000,000 under your control in the UK
  • invested at least £750,000 (or 75%) of that in UK government bonds, share capital or loan capital in active UK companies
  • invested this sum within three months of your ‘investor start date’

You will need to provide investment portfolio reports to show your investments were made within the time permitted and this remained in place for the duration of the visa.

If you applied for your investor visa on or after 6th November 2014, in order to extend your visa, you will need to prove you have:

  • at least £2,000,000 under your control in the UK
  • invested those funds in share capital or loan capital in active UK companies
  • invested this sum within three months of your ‘investor start date’

If you applied before 29th March 2019, you can also apply for an extension to your investment visa if you invested your funds into UK government bonds.

When can I apply for UK citizenship as an investor and am I eligible?

To apply to become a British/UK citizen, you will need to wait for a further 12 months after the point you have been living in the UK for five years.

To be eligible to apply for British citizenship, you must:

  • provide evidence you arrived in the UK five years before the day the Home Office receives your application for citizenship
  • meet the language requirements for English, Welsh, or Scottish Gaelic
  • have passed the ‘life in the UK’ test
  • intend to continue living in the UK
  • be of good character

As part of your application, the Home Office will check how many days you have spent in total outside of the UK to verify you have not:

  • spent more than 450 days outside the UK during the five-year period
  • spent more than 90 days outside the UK in the last 12 months
  • broken any UK immigration laws

You will also be able to apply for UK citizenship for your children at the same time, however, each person will require a separate application form to be completed. This is assuming they were born outside the UK or in the UK but before you were granted ILR.

Once approved (which may take around six months), you will be required to attend a UK citizenship ceremony and you will be given a formal certificate of British citizenship. Under the government rules, it is then required that you destroy your biometric residence permit (BRP) when you receive your certificate and return it to the Home Office within five days, otherwise, you may be fined £1,000. At this point, you will also be eligible for a British passport.

What should I do if I am refused entry, extension, or ILR as a Tier 1 investor applicant?

If at any point your application is refused by the Home Office, whether when applying for your initial Tier 1 investor visa, a subsequent extension, or for ILR, it is imperative you seek legal advice from specialist immigration Solicitors. They will assess the details of your case to determine the underlying reason for the refusal and how best to proceed. In some cases, it may be faster and preferable to submit a fresh application. In other circumstances, it may be possible to bring an appeal on human rights grounds.

If there is clear evidence of an administrative error on behalf of the Home Office (i.e. if they made a mistake when interpreting the immigration rules), an Administrative Review may be sought. And finally, a Judicial review may be possible if it is clear that the decision made was unlawful.

Final words

As stated at the outset, the UK government are keen to encourage high-net-worth investors to come to the UK to contribute to the economy. It is for this reason they have enabled the fast-tracking of ILR for individuals investing £5 million or more. If you are keen to invest your capital and bring your family to the UK to settle, you will find the business and immigration system will be open and welcoming. We wish you well in your new venture in the UK.

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ACQ5 Awards Award ACQ5 Awards Award
Lexis Nexis Lexis Nexis
Three Best Rated Three Best Rated
Department For International Development Department For International Development
University Of Cambridge University Of Cambridge
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O.L

Andy Tieu is absolutely amazing.

As a lawyer myself I can categorically say that he knows his stuff, gentle, responsive, cares about you and not just about the money, very professional.
I mean I can go on and on!

Andy and the entire team at Reiss Edwards are amazing!

Thanks again Andy.

Kiran Sardar


I found Joe very helpful and tremendous patience which is a must in this professional as there are lots of emotions always involved in each and every case.

The way they dealt with my case during COVID19 Situation is highly appreciable. I would definitely recommend Joe D. and Anna F. Anna is an amazing lady, her patience is beyond my words.

Her hard work and professionalism have no boundaries. She is the right person for all type of cases.

Thanks to Anna and Joe for all your support and guidance which helped me fulfill my dream.

I would say Reiss Edwards is lucky to have Joe D. and Anna F. Great job Reiss Edwards.

thanks once again. Anna you’re a Gem and a Star.

Cheyam Shaked

"Anna Foley was the lawyer helping my partner obtain an EEA EFM visa. She was outstanding. Handling the case with constant correspondence over a lengthy, lockdown delayed 7-month application process. Her expert advice guided us successfully through some difficult times as a result of COVID-19. Some of the best service I have received for any service ever! Often replying to emails late at night, offering to send additional correspondence to the home office and going above and beyond in handling our case! Well done and thank you Reiss Edwards and thank you Anna!!".

Isaac .T

"Professional service. I was very impressed with the fact that my ILR application was successful 6 weeks after the submission amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. I also think the portfolio put together by the team at Reiss Edwards has played a big part in the quick turnaround of my application".

Jesse Lee

"Reiss Edwards did a great job, and so much work, for their reasonable fixed fee. I would heartily recommend them to anyone looking to secure a Visa and /or Visa renewal. I will use them again when mine needs to renew. Great value".

Majlinda Berisha

"The help, the professionalism, the kindness from this team is phenomenal. A massive thank you to Anna Foley.

I have had a really tough time with getting my husband’s visa. My last immigration lawyer made many mistakes that caused stress, disappointments and sadness.

I was weary about getting another lawyer as I thought I was going to go through the same experience but no, it turned out better than what I had hoped or even imagined.

What I received was: constant emails and calls updating me and asking if anything else is needed. If I called and they missed my phone call I would get a call back within 10 minutes. All of my documents were carefully checked and I would get a reply the next day if anything was missing or not correct. There were times that I was impatient and asked to just send the visa off, but was reminded that everything had to be perfect and correct before submitting the application. I was told about every option I had and discussed what the best would be. I was always spoke in a nice, calm, polite manner.

The overall intelligence of this team, especially Anna Foley for me, is outstanding. I am speechless. Anna done such an amazing job on my husband’s application that although we couldn’t apply for the fast service and was told to wait for 12 weeks, we got a reply within 5 weeks.

That alone shows what an amazing and talented team Reiss Edwards are. Thank you".

Christine .C

"I wholeheartedly recommend Reiss Edwards to anyone who is in search of immigration advice. I had the pleasure of speaking with Amar who has been very thorough in finding a solution to my enquiry, and followed up with additional information even after the consultation. I normally don't leave reviews, and this firm already has enough good reviews for me to need to my own anyways! However, in this instance, I do hope that my review can let anyone who reads it be aware that RE is a great choice, these people care enough to help you the best they can".

Zohaib Butt

"I had the chance to use Reiss Edwards services for my Tier 2 extension. Marija dealt with my case and I found her very professional and experienced in dealing with my application. The care and attention to detail was exceptional. I would definitely recommend Reiss Edwards!".

Quintus Liu

"Knowledgeable, experienced, and relatable. Translated a complex process into steps that are easy to follow. Cruised to 3 successive wins on my Tier 1 graduate/entrepreneurship visa which allowed us to play our part in making the UK a better and healthier place!".

Khasan Vosijonov

"Thank you, Ms. Anna Foley! I am writing this with tears of joy.

As a family, we are all grateful to Anna Foley and her firm Reiss Edwards, for doing all the hard work and giving us the best support. Finally We found the best law firm".

Saira Lawson-Brown

"Highly professional organisation and really supportive solicitors. Ina Iteva the solicitor that was provided to us was a blessing in disguise, as our first solicitor was let go off due to pandemic. She was so supportive and understanding throughout the process, and my husband spouse visa was granted due to their effort and attention to detail. We constantly try to keep in touch with her and consider her as more of a friend now than a solicitor. Sure, to bother her and the firm more in the future".

Nora Nkechi

"My Tier 1 Investor Visa was dealt with quickly and without issue. Would recommend Reiss Edwards as an Immigration law firm in London. Thank you to the team".

Deepak Chartbhurjh

"This is the only firm that i spoke with that didn't ask for money before listening to me, will be using them again. I used Reiss Edwards for my Tier 2 visa application and it was successful. The team was ever present and happy to answer my question. The caseworker that dealing with my case went on holiday yet by case did not suffer one bit. Another lawyer stepped and took over the case without any hassle".

Hakeem Salam

"I used Reiss Edwards immigration lawyers to assist with my immigration matter and that of my family. It was an EX1 application. They dealt with the matter properly and even when complications were coming up from the Home Office, they helped resolve the issue properly. They are very professional and are very popular in London. I am happy to have worked with them".

Top Notch Immigration Service

"Reiss Edwards is a top notch immigration service company. The way they handled our documentation and also the list of documents they sent was efficient and top quality. They helped us professionally throughout the process. We are very happy with the immigration advice we received from the team. We highly recommend them".

Mo Hussein

"I have been using Reiss Edwards for three years now for my family's immigration application. Both for my initial application and extension. They are really affordable. The team of solicitors at this firm are probably one of the most efficient and economical in terms of cost. They offered free advice over the phone and spent good time with us before inviting us for consultation".

Gallagher Jones

"I contacted Reiss Edwards to help me with my wife's UK settlement visa. They acted with utmost professionalism throughout the entire application. I spoke with Joe Dinh, he is an immigration solicitor and he is one of the best solicitors out there. He ensured that there was little to no room for error. At some point I thought he was over cautious. He remained calmed and continued to assure us on our immigration matter. Most people in his position would have panicked but he was calmed and continued to assure us. We received out positive outcome very quickly".

Richard Stone

"I have just had British Citizenship application approved. Prior to making the application, I was not sure which law firm i should hire to facilitate the paperwork. After a few hours of research, i decided to go with Reiss Edwards and i must confess that I wasn't disappointed. The immigration lawyers at Reiss Edwards handled my case well and they really knew what they were doing. They were fully aware of what documents I needed and it was easy for them to tell if my case was going to be easy or not. At the end of the day, I have not received my British citizenship within 3 months. If anyone is looking for a good immigration lawyer to handle their case, contact Reiss Edwards".

Fong Li

"Investing over 2 million pounds is definitely not a routine decision. We had to make sure that the Tier 1 investor immigration lawyers that we'd be picking has to be one of the best within the Tier 1 investor category. We contacted Reiss Edwards and they were able to get us not only the Tier 1 investor visa but also suggested profitable investment portfolios in addition to what we already had in mind".

Nancy Jacquard

"It's a shame that you don't have an 'Excellent' star rating on here, as my experience with Reiss Edwards is nothing short of an excellent rating. They handled my application for an Indefinite Leave to remain in April 2014 and did my husband's one very recently including my daughter. Every time i have approached them, they have continued to treat me with courtesy, respect and patience. Amar was indeed a very thorough and professional gentleman. He is very knowledgeable, corporative and engaging. He responded to my emails, calls and enquiries promptly. He was always reassuring. I could not have asked for a better Immigration service. I would recommend them over and over again for anyone looking for an immigration advice. They gave me a free immigration advice when i called them, and the quality of the advice was something other charge thousands for. If you need a particular, name, Amar would be it. He exemplifies, for me, the true, professional gentleman. He is a valuable asset to Reiss Edwards".

Florence Giwa

"I am glad that i instructed Reiss Edwards on my visa matter. It started with a 20 minutes free immigration advice. I met with Amar to discuss my ILR refusal. He gave me a great deal of quality advice and decided to take on my messy case. I had doubts on the merits of my case by he was relatively convinced he could win it. That made me quite secure. To be honest, things did not start as quick as I would have wanted, but they kept on communicating the process and state of things to me.A big thank you to Verusha and Foram. They were also very helpful. Brilliant and informative. Their fee was fair and reasonable, especially if you compare them to other law firms and immigration law firms in London; some of whom even told me that i would not be able to get an indefinte leave to remain in this country. The process was long but was worth it. In the end, a big thank you to Reiss Edwards".

Salisu Ibrahim

"Fantastic Solicitors!!! My wife's spouse visa extension application was refused by the Home Office and they gave her 14 days to leave the country. We contacted Reiss Edwards and they said "OK don't worry we will sort this out". They put together the list of documents for me to obtain and they prepared a bundle which was as thick as the printer it came out from.We followed everything they asked us to do and in the end we won our appeal and got our spouse visa. We can't recommend them enough and we have promised ourselves never to make any more UK visa applications without them".

Amir Sandeep

"The team of lawyers at Reiss Edwards are very professional and friendly people. Their experience in and around UK immigration law is quite extensive; be sure that you application is in safe and competent hands. My immigration matter was an indefinite leave to remain application based on Tier 1 on a self-employment basis. The immigration lawyers at Reiss Edwards made sure that the application was perfect and ready to be accepted. I got a positive decision and I recommend them highly for anyone who needs a UK immigration help".

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O.L

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