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Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa Extension

The Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa was for foreign entrepreneurs interested in investing in or setting up and running a business (or businesses) in the UK as a sole trader, partnership, or company.

This visa scheme is no longer open to new applicants. Contact our experienced immigration solicitors on 020 3744 2797 to discuss your Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa extension application or other alternative visas you can consider.

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What is the Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa?

The Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa is closed to new applicants, however, there are alternatives available. Overseas entrepreneurs considering setting up a business in the UK should now consider either the newer start-up visa or the innovator visa. If you currently hold a Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa, you have until 6th April 2023 to extend your visa.

The Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa was for foreign entrepreneurs interested in investing in or setting up and running a business (or businesses) in the UK. This includes as a sole trader, partnership, or company registered in the UK.

Applicants needed to have cash funds of at least £200,000, and there was also a Graduate Entrepreneur route which required capital of £50,000.

With a Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa, it was possible to:

  • Live in the UK
  • Work on a business venture for an initial period of 3 years and 4 months
  • Further extend the visa
  • Bring dependant family to the UK
  • Gain accelerated Indefinite Leave to Remain after just 3 years (if 10 or more full-time jobs or a business income of £5 million or more has been created).

Extending your Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa

If you currently hold leave to remain as a Tier 1 Entrepreneur migrant, you may be able to make a Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa UK extension application as you approach the tail end of your initial application visa.

It is important that during your initial leave as a Tier 1 Entrepreneur migrant, you must have created jobs and invested the required sum in addition to meeting the other conditions of your visa. The Tier 1 UK Entrepreneur visa initial application is usually granted for 3 years and 4 months. At this point, the applicant may apply for a Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa extension to extend their leave to remain.

Who is eligible to apply for Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa extension?

You can apply for a Tier 1 UK Entrepreneur extension if you:

  • Have invested £200,000 or £50,000 into 1 or more UK businesses (the amount depends on how much you said you would invest when you applied).
  • Registered as a director or as self-employed within 6 months of the exact date you were granted your Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa to come to the UK.
  • Have evidence to show you have been self-employed, a member of a partnership or working as a director within a UK business within 3 months of applying for your extension.
  • Were responsible for creating at least 2 full-time jobs. These must have existed for at least 1 full year. It is important that the jobs you have created must meet all necessary UK laws in terms of working time and minimum pay.
  • Can continue to financially support yourself

Deadline for Tier 1 Entrepreneur extension

The current immigration rules state that if you did not hold a Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur before being granted a Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa, you must apply for your extensions by 6th April 2023.

If you did hold a Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur visa before you switched to a Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa, you will have until 6th July 2025 to apply for an extension.

If you are unsure how or when to apply for an extension of your entrepreneur visa, our team of specialist immigration solicitors can help you. We can handle the application process on your behalf, ensuring you have the best chance of a successful outcome and allowing you to focus on your business. Speak to one of our specialist solicitors today on 020 3744 2797.

Requirements for Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa extension

To acquire a Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa extension, you will need to meet the following requirement:

  • You must have become registered as a director or as self-employed in a UK business within 6 months of being granted your Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa
  • You must be registered as a business director or as self-employed within the 3 months of your extension application
  • You must have invested the funds you stated in your initial application (either at least £200,000 or £50,000) in a UK business
  • You must have created at least two full-time jobs for persons settled in the UK, and these jobs must have existed for at least 12 months
  • You have set up, acquired, or become a director in a UK business
  • You must be actively running the business
  • You must intend to continue operating the business
  • You must meet the English language requirements (at least CEFR Level B1 for reading, writing, listening and speaking)
  • You have sufficient funds to support yourself without relying on public funds.

To check if you meet the full requirements to apply to extend your Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa, speak to one of our specialist business visa solicitors today on 020 3744 2797.

Supporting documents for Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa extension

The exact supporting documents for your Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa will depend on your circumstances. Some of the documents you may be asked to provide include:

  • Evidence you are registered with HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) as self-employed, or with Companies House as a director of a UK company, or member of a UK partnership.
  • Evidence of your specified investment – either in the form of:
    • audited business accounts
    • unaudited accounts with an account’s compilation report
  • Directors’ loan agreement – this will be needed if your business was funded by a directors’ loan.
  • Details of the employment start date, job title, job description, hours paid per pay period and the hourly rate for settled workers.
  • Employees payslips – showing the number of employees and how much you pay them. This includes printouts of Real Time-Full Payment Submissions showing you are complying with Pay As You Earn (PAYE) reporting requirements to HM Revenue & Customs.

For a full set of documentation requirements, check the Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) of the Points Based System – Policy Guidance1.

If you are unsure which documents to provide to the Home Office, speak to one of our specialist business visa solicitors today on 020 3744 2797, who can check your documents prior to submission.

Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa extension application fees

The application fee for a Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa UK extension is £1,277. In addition, you will need to pay £19.20 to have your biometric information (fingerprints and a photo) taken. The healthcare surcharge will also be payable when you apply for your extension (£624 per person per year).

Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa extension process

You must apply to extend your Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa before your current visa expires. To extend your Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa, you will need to complete the following steps:

  • Complete the online Tier 1 Entrepreneur form (Tier 1 Entrepreneur extension application form) 2.
  • Pay the application fee, biometric fee, and healthcare surcharge.
  • Upload any documents required.
  • Book an appointment at a UK Visa and Citizenship Application Services (UKVCAS) service point. This is to provide your biometric information (fingerprints and a digital photograph). You can also provide your supporting documents to UKVCAS if you prefer, who will upload these to your application.

While your application is being processed, you will be able to remain in the UK and continue running your business without restrictions.

It is also important that you do not travel outside of the UK, Ireland, the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man while your application is being processed.

Applications for Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa extensions take approximately 8 weeks. You may be asked to provide additional documents or to attend an interview, which may take longer.

Can your dependants apply for a visa extension at the same time?

Your dependant family members can apply for a visa extension at the same time. They will need to submit their own visa extension application.

In addition, you will need to provide evidence that you have an additional £945 to support each family member who is with you in the UK. The application fee for family members is £1,277 each, in addition to the biometric fee of £19.20 and the healthcare surcharge (£624 per year per adult and £470 for children).

Our team of specialist business visa solicitors can prepare applications for you and your family members on your behalf. Speak to our team today on 020 3744 2797.

Applying for ILR after Tier 1 Entrepreneur extension

If you have already created 10 or more full-time jobs or a business income of £5 million or more, you will be eligible for ILR after just 3 years. If you are not on the accelerated route, you will need to wait for 5 years. This means that once you have an extension of your entrepreneur visa and you have been in the UK for 5 years (since the start of your first entrepreneur visa), you can apply for ILR. Having ILR means you can remain in the UK permanently and, after 1 year, apply for British citizenship.

It is important that you apply for settlement before the new deadlines set by the Home Office for Entrepreneur visa holders. The new rules state that those who did not hold a Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur) visa before gaining a Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) visa have until 6th April 2025 to apply for ILR. Those who held a Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur) visa before switching to a Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) visa have until 6th July 2027 to apply for ILR.

Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa application refused

Entrepreneur extension applications may be refused for a number of reasons, including if:

  • The applicant has not invested the necessary investment funds
  • The applicant does not appear to have a genuine intention to continue running their business
  • The applicant has not created enough jobs
  • There are concerns about the applicant’s conduct, character, associations or other reasons, which mean it would not be conducive to the public good to give them permission
  • The applicant has a criminal record (this depends on the type and duration of the sentence and how long ago this was)
  • The applicant has provided false information on their application
  • The applicant has breached the immigration rules in the past

If your Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa application is refused, it may be possible to apply for an administrative review if you believe a mistake has been made by the Home Office. This must be done within 28 days of your refusal decision.

In rare circumstances, such as if the decision made was unlawful, it may be possible to apply for a judicial review. Alternatively, it may be preferable to submit a fresh application or apply for a different type of visa.

Our team can review your refusal and advise on your options and the best way forward. We can also complete the next steps for you and ensure you receive a positive decision as quickly as possible. Speak to one of our friendly and empathetic business immigration solicitors today on 020 3744 2797.

References

1 GOV.UK: Tier 1 Entrepreneur Policy Guidance

2 GOV.UK: Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur Visa

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"Andy Tieu is absolutely amazing, as a lawyer myself I can categorically say tha...

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"I found Joe very helpful and tremendous patience which is a must in this profes...

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Cheyam Shaked

"Anna Foley was the lawyer helping my partner obtain an EEA EFM visa. She was ou...

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