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Tier 1 Entrepreneur Scheme: great opportunity for post-study visa holders!

18 June 2012

In the last 12 months, the UK Government has shown a clear willingness to attract both young and established entrepreneurs to stimulate the country's economic growth and step up in the race to win over the talents and capital of young graduates with promising ideas that might lead to new businesses, new products and new jobs.

In spite of the economic downturn, London remains by far the most buzzing, cosmopolitan and creative city in the world as evidenced by the abundance of arts, culture and hedge funds born in the capital. However, opportunities for foreign entrepreneurs exist all over the country with cheaper starting costs particularly in the North-East.

Only last July, the UK Border Agency (UKBA) relaxed its requirements to encourage entrepreneurs to settle in the UK by allowing them to spend more time outside the UK and introducing accelerated routes to settle in the UK for successful Tier 1 Entrepreneurs.

Although on 6 April 2012, the Tier 1 Post-Study Worker (PSW) Scheme was abolished, foreign students who are currently in the UK as  Tier 1 PSW holders  have the opportunity to apply for further leave to remain as a Tier 1 Entrepreneur by showing funds in the amount of £50,000 as opposed to meeting the higher threshold of £200,000.

Thus, if you are currently in the UK under the Tier 1 PSW Scheme to qualify as a Tier 1 Entrepreneur you must  only show that you have the available funds and that the main business activity must be at graduate level.

If you are relying on money held by your husband, wife or partner, they can be regarded as a third party. Moreover, you can include money made available by other people (known as 'a third party or parties'). However, you must also provide a declaration that the money is available to you or the business that you are running, from each contributor of funds, together with confirmation that the declarations are valid. This money can be made up from money already invested in business together with access to any balance of money needed to total £50,000.

If you wish, you will be allowed to form an Entrepreneurial Team with another applicant who must also be a Tier 1 PSW holder and qualify to use the same amount of investment. This is a great incentive for young entrepreneurs as they will be able to settle after five years in this category.

In addition, the UKBA has also introduced a sub-category of the Tier 1 Entrepreneur Scheme whereby migrants will be able to qualify for this particular visa if their innovative ideas are backed by venture capital in the amount of £50,000.

Migra & Co has acted successfully for many applicants in respect of the entrepreneur visas both in and out of country. We have a team of experienced senior consultants who will be happy to assist you with any questions and explain the visa application process in details. Call us now for a free initial assessment.

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Migra & Co is a private immigration company, regulated by the Office of the Immigration Services Commissioner (OISC), reference number F200900038. This website is not a government website and as such, we are not linked or affiliated with the UK Visas and Immigration. We offer expert legal advice and flexible tailored solutions to both private and corporate clients to ensure that their immigration needs are met. If you wish to download or prepare a UK visa application form, you can do so free of charge by visiting the Official UKVI website.