This visa category is for people wishing to come to the UK to start a business. You may start any type of business, but you must work full time in the management of the business.
If you are a national of a country that is not covered by the EEA association agreement, you will need to show that you will:
- Invest £200,000 in a new UK business.
- Create full time employment for at least 2 EEA citizens
- Work solely in the business
- Have sufficient funds to accommodate and maintain yourself until the business is profitable.
- Have a controlling interest in the business.
- Take a share of the businessís liabilities
- Be implementing a business plan that looks to be thorough and viable
- The money to be invested in the UK should be your own and not from any other source (e.g. bank loans). It can be held in the form of cash and share capital and the investment should give you an equal or controlling interest in the business.
You will initially get a visa valid for a period of 12 months. During this time you must usually make the full investment and create the required 2 jobs. At the end of this first year, the visa can be extended by applying to the Home Office. The extension application will need to be accompanied by documentation showing the progress that your business has made; as long as the business looks viable, the investment has been made, and the jobs have been created, then the Home Office will normally grant a three-year extension to your visa. After a total of 4 years in the UK you may apply for indefinite leave to remain (Permanent Residence). A year after being granted indefinite leave to remain you may apply for naturalisation as a British citizen.