Under Appendix Start up, a foreign national who is ether in the UK or wants to come to the UK can set up the business. The basic requirements under this route are that you must score 70 points made up from the following list to qualify.
You should note that this route is for new entrepreneurs seeking to establish a business in the UK for the first time which must be innovative, viable and a scalable business idea which has been assessed and supported by an approved endorsing body to have any chance of succeeding You must also provide a letter of endorsement from a Home Office approved endorsing body. Applicants are only allowed a maximum of 2 years under this route. Leave previously held in the legacy Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur) route counts towards the ma You should note that there is a 2-year maximum 2-year limit nd it does not lead to settlement in the UK. However, there is a Covid 19 concession for those who have been issued with a visa under this route and provided it can be shown that there has been an impact the period will be extended by 12months.
What are the requirements under the rules? To qualify you will have to show
You will not qualify if you have already established a business unless it falls into the Start-up route, T1 (Graduate Route) or if you were on a doctoral extension
The Business Plan, as with any other document this will need to be in English, if it is not then a certified English copy will need to be obtained. Not only must the business be genuine, but you will also need to show how your business meets the requirements, here some guidance in the rules is provided which state
(a) the applicant has a genuine, original business plan that meets new or existing market needs and/or creates a competitive advantage; and
(b) the applicant’s business plan is realistic and achievable based on the applicant’s available resources; and
(c) the applicant has, or is actively developing, the necessary skills, knowledge, experience and market awareness to successfully run the business; and
(d) there is evidence of structured planning and of potential for job creation and growth into national markets.
The English requirement is at level B2 which is higher than a spousal entry clearance application. The English test will need to be taken at an approved education centre, otherwise it will not be accepted as valid. The English requirement can be dispensed with where you can show you are coming from a majority speaking country as set out in the home office list at https://www.gov.uk/guidance/immigration-rules/immigration-rules-appendix-english-language or you have GCSE, A level, Scottish National Qualification at level 4 or 5 or, Scottish Higher or Advanced Higher, in English (language or literature), that was awarded by an Ofqual (or SQA, Qualifications Wales or CCEA) regulated awarding body following education undertaken in a UK based school which began while you were aged under 18. or where you have an academic qualification which is degree level or above from a UK institution, if it is not UK based then the qualification will need to be confirmed by UK NARIC.
Financial Requirement: In addition, you will need to show you have the funds to support yourself in line with Appendix Finance, the amount will depend on whether you are in the UK or are seeking to enter the UK. If you are seeking to enter then you will need to show that you have the following funds available, you cannot use Overdrafts, credit cards, pensions, shares, bonds or third parties who are offering support, the bank account needs to be in your name or in a joint name .
· £1,270 for yourself
· £285 for any dependant partner
· £315 for the first child
· £200 for each subsequent child
Any evidence of the funds must be within a 31day period of submitting the application, so you will need to check dates before you submit the application.
If you have been in the UK with permission for 12months, then you will not need to meet the financial requirement, but if it has been for less than 12months then you will need to. You may have to show that any funds or savings that you have were acquired periods of lawful leave and that you were not in breach of the permission you held.
Endorsing Body Requirement. If you can cross the above, next comes the issue of having an endorsing body which has to appear in the home office list which can be found at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/endorsing-bodies-start-up/start-up and without this letter which is a mandatory requirement, your application will fail.
On the face of the start-up route seems attractive given no investment is required, but the requirements to innovative and have the need for an endorsement letter makes it a difficult route to navigate if you are looking to set up in the UK under this route.