Tier 1 Entrepreneur: new test!

With the recent Statement of Changes in the Immigration Rules, the UK Border Agency (UKBA) has tried to remedy the increased abuse of the Tier 1 Entrepreneur Scheme whereby it appears that funds were recycled in multiple applications.

As a result, the UKBA has now introduced a test to assess the ‘genuineness’ of such applicants by examining factors including the:

  • origin of the funds that a migrant intends to use to establish their business;
  • viability and credibility of the applicant’s business plan and any market research undertaken (SWOT analysis, competitor research etc);
  • applicant’s business experience and education; and
  • immigration history and previous activity in the UK.

 

The funds intended to be used to establish the business will also need to be available to the applicant at all times except where the funds have been used to establish the business. Importantly, this will exclude the applicant’s own salary. The funds will need to be spent in the initial 3 years period.

In particular, a caseworker must be satisfied that the applicant:

– has established or intends and is able to establish, take over or become a director of one or more businesses in the UK within the next 6 months;

– intends to invest the money in the business or businesses;

– that the money is genuinely available to the applicant, and will remain available to him until such time as it is spent by his business or businesses. ‘Available to him’ means that the funds are in his own possession, or in the financial accounts of a UK incorporated business of which he is the director, or available from the third party or parties named in the application following the grant of this application.

The UKBA reserves the right to request additional information and evidence to support the assessment, and to refuse the application if the information or evidence is not provided. Any requested documents must be received at the address specified in the request within 28 days.