Entrepreneur Visa

Overview of Entrepreneur Visas – Points Based System

Entrepreneurs can now apply for permission to set up in business in the United Kingdom under Tier 1 of the Points Based System. The Entrepreneur sub-category replaces the previous Businesspersons and Innovators schemes. The Entrepreneur sub-category is perfect for those individuals wishing to start a business and invest money in the UK who can meet the required criteria. A person wishing to enter the United Kingdom as an Entrepreneur must score 95 points through the Points Based System. The points are made up as follows:  

Specific Criteria

A score of 75 points is needed to satisfy the requirements to enter the United KIngdom under the Entreprenuer sub-category. The requirements to gain these points are called the Attributes Requirement and they require that the: 

Applicant has at least £200,000 25 points
Funds are held in a regulated financial institution 25 points
Funds are disposable in the United Kingdom 25 points

English Language Ability

In addition applicants must show that they are proficient in English. Applicants must attain 10 points in the Language Requirement which is in addition to the above attributes points. Evidence of this must be provided in one of the following:   

  • that they have passed a test in English equivalent to level C1 of the Council of Europe’s Common European Framework for Language Learning (equivalent to a grade C or better at GCSE or 6.5 at IELTS); or
  • that they come from a country where English is the predominant language; or
  • that they have taken a degree taught in English (this is verified by using the National Academic Recognition Information Centre data)


Successful proof of one of these criteria will earn the required 10 points for the English language requirement.  


Applicants applying for the Entrepreneur visa from outside the United Kingdom will also be required to score 10 points by proving they can support themselves and any dependants. This is called the Maintennace Requirement. This only applies to applicants seeking entry from outside the UK and not to those applicants who have already obtained the Entrepreneur visa and who wish to renew their visa from inside the United Kingdom. The Maintenance Requirments are: 

Start up costs Funds Total
£400 £2,400 £2,800
2/3 of the £2,400 is required for first dependent of the main applicant, and an additional 1/3 must be 
added for each subsequent dependant. 


Any applicant not scoring the required number of points will be refused. It is therefore vital that applicants obtain advice from a specialist Immigration Solicitor before proceeding with an application of this nature. Applicants should bear in mind that failure to send the correct documentation or to enclose the correct photographic requirements or even failure to enclose the correct fee will result in their application being refused and the application fee will not be refunded by the UK Border Agency.Who Can Apply?  

Who Can Apply?

Nationals of all countries outside the EEA (Eurpoean Economic Area) are entitled to apply for an Entry Clearance Certificate (visa) to enter the United Kingdom as an Entrepreneur. You can apply for the Entrepreneur visa if you are:    

  • already in the UK under the Entrepreneur category and want to extend your permission to stay within that category; or
  • already in the UK as a business person or innovator and want to extend your permission to stay in the Entrepreneur category; or
  • applying from outside the UK for permission to enter (called ;Entry Clearance) in the Entrepreneur category


Who Can Not Apply?

The following are persons who are not eligible to apply for an Entry Clearance Certificate (visa) to enter the United KIngdom as an Entrepreneur:  




  • you are in the UK illegally or your previous visa has expired or been curtailed; or
  • you do not meet the Attributes Requirements; or
  • you do not meet the Language Requirement; or
  • you are in the UK in a capacity that does not allow you to switch to this category of visa; or
  • you are an EEA or Swiss national; or
  • you are a British overseas territories citizen, unless you are from one of the sovereign base areas in Cyprus; or
  • you are a Commonwealth citizen with permission to enter or stay in the United Kingdom because at least one of your grandparents was born here; or
  • your spouse or civil partner, unmarried or same-sex partner, or (if you are under 18) one of your parents has permission to stay in the United Kingdom under the entrepreneur category of the points-based system; or 
  • you have no conditions or time limit attached to your stay (ILR); or
  • If you are a national of the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Slovakia or Slovenia you will need to register under the Worker Registration Scheme when you take work in the United Kingdom  

    Extension Application as an Entrepreneur

     To extend your stay in the United Kingdom as an Entrepreneur, see our related article 

      Free Initial Advice

     For a free 30 minute telephone consultation to assess your eligibility for this or any other ategory of immigration in the United Kingdom call us on 020 8401 7352 or complete our online contact application     


    Comments are closed.