Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa Application – A Tough Ask
The Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa category offers an attractive route to a life in the UK, although its popularity has declined markedly in the past two years. Government rhetoric on being ‘tough on immigration’ was matched with a ‘tightening up’ of the criteria for this category of visa, with the result that the number of applications has fallen dramatically.
In 2014, there were 5,890 applications for Tier 1 Entrepreneur visas. Over the following 12 months that figure had slumped to just 1,360. Clearly, entrepreneurially motivated migrants were not happy with UKVI policy.
Tough Government Stance
The government’s position in enacting a tougher regime was that the scheme specialist immigration lawyers by fraudulent applicants whose commercial intentions and qualifications were out of step with the principles underpinning the scheme. The result was new directives insisting that applicants produce a fully researched, viable business plan as part of their application, along with demonstrable proof of their access to funding. These demands came into force in April 2015.
The figures for Tier 1 Entrepreneur visas refusal also show a markedly high rate. Even though the total number of applicants has slumped by 77% over the course of 12 months, the failure rate has remained largely stable. In 2014, 54% of all applications were refused; in 2015 the figure was 50%. And compounding those figures a further 460 and 80 applications were categorised as invalid in 2014 and 2015 respectively.
A Tough Ask
Given the amount of preparation and expense involved in submitting a Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa application these figures are quite striking. This is not something that applicants ordinarily produce without a serious commitment. The basic fee for the applicant alone is around £1,200, with a similar figure applying to each dependent. These fees are not refundable in the event of a refusal. The Tier 1 entrepreneur criteria and Tier 1 entrepreneur extension process now represent a tough ask.
The application process is now one that requires a detailed administrative knowledge of what is required as well as a fully viable business plan. It is now advisable to employ experienced and fully qualified professional assistance – failure to do so runs the very real risk of being just another refusal statistic.
YDVISAS specialise in all visa categories and are specialist immigration lawyers in the UK. Please contact the expert team at YDVISAS, should you need any professional help with your visa application.