Proposed Changes to “Tier 1 Investor” Visas to Help Start-Ups

A senior government adviser has recently suggested that high net worth individuals who require a visa to reside in the UK – such as those from China – should be encouraged to invest in start-up businesses.

Speaking earlier this month, Professor Sir David Metcalf, outlined proposals for significant reforms to a government visa scheme which allows foreigners who invest a minimum of £1m to live in the UK, but does not give them access to a UK passport.

Currently, under the “tier 1 investor” scheme, wealthy foreigners who want to live in the UK must prove that they have £1m, £5m or £10m to invest, 75 per cent of which must be ploughed into either Government gilts or share capital in UK registered firms.

According to reports, most of these individuals prefer to invest in gilts, as if the value of their shareholding in a company drops below the various financial thresholds, they are forced to top up the value of their investment.

However, under the proposals put forward by Professor Sir David, the Government should adapt the scheme to enable the money from these individuals to be invested in fledgling firms, as this would also benefit the UK economy; whilst also making the topping-up rule redundant.

Whilst Professor Sir David has outlined proposals which would reform the existing “tier 1 investor” scheme, for those who are facing difficulties with their visas; the immigration solicitors at Howe+Co are able to assist.

We have been leading specialists in all areas of Immigration law for over 20 years, and have a large team of accredited and highly experienced immigration lawyers who are able to assist in a range of student visa matters – whilst we also have extensive experience of appearing at immigration tribunals, ensuring the best outcome for our clients.

To find out how we can help you with your student visa, contact us today.

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