The UK gives many great opportunities to entrepreneurs; it’s a great place for doing business. This is why entrepreneurs from outside the UK wish to come to the UK for a new venture. Entrepreneurs have the ability to start and develop a business – along, of course, with all the associated risks.
Entrepreneurs from all nationalities can apply for a UK Tier 1 entrepreneur visa to enter the UK. In recent years, the number of applicants for UK Tier 1 entrepreneur visa has increased – so much so that the UKVI felt the need to introduce a Genuine Entrepreneur Test for all such applicants.
Who can apply for UK Tier 1 entrepreneur visa?
Individual migrants who are looking to start, join or take over one or more businesses in the UK can apply for a Tier 1 entrepreneur visa. They must have the following in order to apply for the visa:
- They must have access to minimum funds – either £200,000 or £50,000
- They must meet the English language requirements
- They must have sufficient personal funds to support themselves
- They must be a ‘Genuine entrepreneur’
What is the Genuine Entrepreneur Test?
The Genuine Entrepreneur test is an interview style test for individuals applying for a UK Tier 1 entrepreneur visa under the points-based system category. This means that the entrepreneurial applicant has to convince the Home Office that they are a “genuine” entrepreneur in the UK.
This test is generally taken through an interview. This is the reason why many applicants have started to feel that passing the genuine entrepreneur test is a complex, strict, unattractive and difficult process which, in turn, makes this visa route unattractive to them. There are, however, steps you can take to avoid your entrepreneur visa application being refused.
The Genuine Entrepreneur Test procedure
UKVI will consider the following when making their decision against a ‘Genuine Entrepreneur Assessment’:
- The evidence submitted by the applicant
- The credibility of a fund’s source
- The credibility of the entrepreneur visa business plan, including the legitimacy of the market research conducted
- The educational background and business experience of the applicant
- The previous immigration history of the applicant(s) and their activity in the UK
Once UKVI has gone through the evidence submitted by the applicant and reviewed the business plan, the next step is to interview the migrant about his or her business plan. After the interview, they will make a decision. During the interview, they will interview the applicant at length about the business plans. Some questions which they may ask the applicant are below:
- What services does your business provide?
- Do you have a website?
- Did you undertake a market research and of what kind?
- What was the result of your research?
Because interviewing officers may not be a business expert, it is important that the applicant puts great emphasis on the business plan to ensure it is comprehensive and well drafted. For a great business plan, applicants should consider taking the assistance of professional business plan writers, if possible. They will carry out comprehensive market research and analysis which will be incorporated into a well-drafted business plan and presented to UKVI.
For more advice regarding the entrepreneur visa test, contact us to see how we can advise you. There are many ways in which we can help you and we are always available to answer any questions you might have about visa applications, guiding you through each step of the process.