The criteria specify that the applicant must show that they have money of their own under their control in a regulated financial institution amounting to no less than GBP 2 million.
The individual must invest for five years in the UK by way of UK share capital or loan capital in active and trading UK-registered companies (other than those principally engaged in property investment). Investment in government bonds and offshore companies is no longer permitted.
The applicant is not required to show business experience or the ability to speak English. Some nationals (Chinese, Nigerian, Russian, among others) are required to undertake a TB test before submitting their application. Investors are permitted to be gainfully employed under this visa or undertake a course of study in the UK.
The UK expects the investor and their family to intend to make the UK their main home. In order to be granted indefinite leave to remain (ILR), the main applicant and their spouse should not spend more than 180 days per year outside the UK. All children who originally applied as the main applicant’s dependents will only be granted ILR if both parents are eligible for ILR.
The applicant will initially obtain the Tier 1 visa for 40 months. Within three months of entry into the UK, they are required to make the investment of GBP 2 million, which must be maintained throughout the period of leave.
At the expiry of the initial 40-month period, the investor must apply for an ‘extension of stay’. The UK government will grant a two-year extension of stay to the whole family if the investor has satisfied the requirements for leave to enter, that is, if they have maintained the investment and adhered to the other general conditions for leave to enter.