If you are already in the UK under another visa category, it may be possible for you to switch into from such other visa category to Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa from inside the UK. Such application can only be made by post as the Home Office, UKVI does not offer Premium Service for the Tier 1 Entrepreneur applications.

Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) is for non-European migrants who want to invest in the UK by setting up or taking over, and being actively involved in the running of, a business or businesses in the UK.

A 'business' means an enterprise as:
(i) a sole trader,
(ii) a partnership, or
(iii) a company registered in the UK

To meet the eligibility criteria for switching into Tier 1 Entrepreneur Migrant, you must score:

For the applicant to succeed in the application for switching into Tier 1 Entrepreneur, the Home Office Immigration Rules and the Tier 1 Entrepreneur Policy Guidance require that the applicant must:

  • be eligible to switch from another visa category to Tier 1 Entrepreneur from inside the UK;
  • have access to either £200,000 or £50,000 cash funds for investment in the UK business;
  • have funds for maintenance for living costs maintained in the bank account for at least 90 days;
  • have English proficiency at CEFR level B1;
  • be a genuine entrepreneur.

The applications for UK Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa have very high refusal rate as the test of genuineness is applied very rigidly to the applications. The most common reason for refusal of an application for switching into Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa from inside the UK is the genuineness of the applicant or his proposed business. In assessing the genuineness of the business and the Entrepreneur, the Home Office, UKVI may take into account:

  • the business plan;
  • the CV of the applicant;
  • the qualifications, skills and previous experience of the applicant;
  • the marketing research carried out by the applicant about the proposed business;
  • the previous immigration history of the applicant;
  • the information given by the applicant about the business and its genuineness during the interview etc.

Who can switch into Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa From Inside The UK?

Persons with the following immigration status can switch into Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa from inside the UK:

  • Highly Skilled Migrant,
  • Tier 1 (General) Migrant,
  • Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) Migrant,
  • Tier 1 (Investor) Migrant,
  • Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur) Migrant
  • Tier 1 (Post-Study Work) Migrant,
  • A Businessperson,
  • An Innovator,
  • An Investor,
  • Participant in the Fresh Talent: Working in Scotland Scheme,
  • Participant in the International Graduates Scheme (or its predecessor, the Science and Engineering Graduates Scheme),
  • Postgraduate Doctor or Dentist,
  • Self-employed Lawyer
  • A Student, a Student Nurse, a Student Re-sitting an Examination, a Student Writing Up a Thesis,
  • A Work Permit Holder,
  • A Writer, Composer or Artist,
  • A Tier 2 Migrant
  • Tier 4 (General) Student who was last sponsored by:
    • a UK recognised body or a body in receipt of public funding as a higher education institution from the Department of Employment and Learning in Northern Ireland, the Higher Education Funding Council for England, the Higher Education Funding Council for Wales or the Scottish Funding Council; or
    • an overseas higher education institution to undertake a short-term study abroad programme in the United Kingdom; or
    • an Embedded College offering Pathway Courses, or
    • an independent school,
  • A Tier 4 (Child) Student, or
  • A visitor who has been undertaking permitted activities as a prospective entrepreneur.

Switching Into Tier 1 Entrepreneur With Access To £200,000 Funds For Investment

Unless you qualify to switch into Tier 1 Entrepreneur with access to £50,000 (see below), you will only be able to switch into Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa with access to £200,000 cash funds for investment.

You can apply for a Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) if you have access to £200,000 in investment funds and you can prove that the money is either:

  • your own including money in a joint account with your spouse or partner; or
  • made available to you by other people (‘third parties’), such as a spouse, partner or investor

For switching applications money must be held in the UK account. You can also apply if you have already invested £200,000 in a UK business. You must have invested the funds less than 12 months before you apply.

If you are in the UK on a Tier 1 (General) visa, you can only switch into Tier 1 Entrepreneur with £200,000 of your own funds if you:

  • have been involved in running one or more UK businesses (for example you are listed as a company director) since before 6 April 2015; and
  • have been working in a job on the list of occupations at the National Qualifications Framework level 4 and above since before 6 April 2015.

Switching Into Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa With Access To £50,000 Funds For Investment

You can switch into Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa from inside the UK with access to £50,000 under following circumstances:

  • you have access to £50,000 in investment funds from one or more of the following:
  • you have access to £50,000 of your own and you are switching into Tier 1 Entrepreneur from one of the following visa categories:
    • Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur
    • Tier 1 Post Study Work (PSW) Migrant
  • you are already in the UK on Tier 4 General Student visa category and you have access to £50,000 in investment funds from one or more of the following:

Why Sunrise Solicitors For Switching Into Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) Application?

The immigration solicitors at Sunrise Solicitors are experts in dealing with applications for switching into Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa. The quality of our service is self-evident from the clients' reviews about the service provided by our immigration lawyers. You can contact us if you are seeking legal help from immigration lawyers in London in relation to your application as Tier 1 Entrepreneur and our immigration solicitors will provide you fast, friendly, reliable and professional immigration service.

We can represent you in your application for switching into Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa from inside the UK and do all the work until decision by the Home Office, UKVI on your application. Our work will include:

  • taking detailed instructions from you and advise you about the relevant immigration laws and procedures to be adopted by the Home Office, UKVI in your Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) application;
  • assessing chances of success in your application based on your qualifications, skills, experience, availability of funds for investment, English language requirement and funds for maintenance;
  • referring you to an accountant who can provide you with help and assistance with the preparation of business plan to be submitted in support of the application for Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa;
  • reviewing the business plan to ensure that it satisfies the genuineness test of the Home Office, UKVI and liaising with the Accountant to ensure that the business plan is revised as necessary;
  • advising you on the weaknesses and strengths of the business plan;
  • preparing you for interview by the Home Office, UKVI in relation to the Tier 1 Entrepreneur application and discussing with you the possible questions to be asked by the Home Office, interviewing officer during the interview;
  • the completion of the Tier 1 Entrepreneur application form;
  • advising you on the relevant requirements, relevant laws and procedures;
  • advising you on the relevant documents to be submitted in support of your application;
  • considering the contents of such documents and discussing the same with you;
  • advising you on the weaknesses and strengths of your application; and
  • preparing a cover letter wherein we will explain in detailed how all the relevant requirements of the switching into Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa are being satisfied. In particular, we will address the potential issue of the genuineness of the applicant as Tier 1 Entrepreneur;
  • submitting your Tier 1 Entrepreneur application to the Home Office, UKVI, and liaising with the Home Office until a decision on the application is received from the Home Office, UKVI;
  • advising you on the outcome of the applications and next steps to be taken by  you, if any.

Our Fee For Switching Into Tier 1 Entrepreneur Application

  • We will charge you a fee from £2,000 + VAT for our professional immigration services in relation to your application for switching into Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) visa from inside the UK. The agreed fee will depend on the complexity of the Tier 1 Entrepreneur application and the casework involved in the matter.
  • If you cannot afford to pay our fee in full at the time of instructing us in relation to your Tier 1 Entrepreneur application, you can pay half of the fee at the time of instructing us and rest of the fee can be paid by monthly instalments.
  • The agreed fee will cover all our work until decision by the Home Office, UKVI on your Tier 1 Entrepreneur application. However, it is pertinent to note that the agreed fee will not cover any disbursements to be incurred by us on your behalf e.g. translation of documents, Home Office fee for the Tier 1 Entrepreneur application, the Immigration Healthcare Surcharge (IHS) etc.

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