The Home Office has confirmed that effective from 9AM on 11 April 2022, the Sole Representative visa route will be closed to new applicants.
Self Sponsorship is a good alternative to consider if you’re considering business opportunities within the UK. A UK Sponsor is not required and this can lead to permanent residency and British citizenship for yourself and your family.
For overseas nationals wanting to work in the UK for their company or expand their business into the UK, the Representative of an Overseas Business Visa, (mostly referred to as a Sole Representative Visa) provides a strong solution. This visa allows you to live and work in the UK for three years, and to bring your dependents to the UK where they can work without restriction.
Businesses based overseas can take advantage of the Sole Representative Visa to establish a presence in Britain to test the market, without the overheads associated with setting up a branch office and hiring local staff.
As the fifth-largest economy in the world, the UK offers vast opportunities for innovative organisations ready to expand. For example, the British High Commissioner to India recently stated the UK and India tech industries were a “marriage made in heaven ”. One way to take advantage of the prospects available in Britain is to send a sole representative to ‘dip their toe in the water’, before making a full commitment.
The Sole Representative Visa (also referred as Representative of an Overseas Business Visa) allows overseas companies to set up a commercial presence of their business in the UK by sending over a senior representative (Sole representative) to the UK.
The Sole Representative Visa offers Indian or any overseas companies to set up a branch or subsidiary of their parent company in the UK.
A Sole representative applying to the UK must be an overseas national who is:
The sole representative is responsible for establishing a branch or subsidiary of the overseas business and making key business decisions on its behalf. The entry clearance officers also take into account:
To be eligible for a Sole Representative Visa, you must provide proof that:
Once your Sole Representative Visa application has been approved, you’ll be eligible to enter the UK and stay to expand your business for 3 years after which you can extend your stay by submitting a leave to remain application. This will further push your stay in the UK for 2 more years.
After 5 years of representing an Indian business in the UK as a senior employee, you can apply for Indefinite leave to remain(ILR) and settle permanently in the UK.
Applicants living in the Uk under the Sole Representative Visa have to abide by the following conditions:
Both you and the company you work for will need to supply a substantial list of documents when applying for a Sole Representative Visa. Our lawyers can assist you with collating the necessary documents and answer any questions the Home Office may have concerning them.
You will need to produce the following:
The Sole Representative Visa offers many benefits, some of which are:
You can easily apply to extend your UK sole representative visa, including your dependants too by verifying your eligibility once again and paying a nominal amount of fees. It can be expanded for up to two years after the initial visa period of 3 years.
The fee would be £704 to extend the visa term plus immigration health surcharge fees and £19.20 for giving the biometric data (fingerprints and a photo).
The home office will contact you within eight weeks after you submit your application.
Yes, it is possible. The UK sole representative visa allows the holder to take their family members with them. However, the dependents must have a visa if they are from outside the UK.
A dependant can be your husband, wife, or partner and your child under 18.
If your dependents own the majority of the company, you will be representing then you may not bring them with you.
If your child is just born in the UK, then you can apply to add them to your visa as your dependent.
If your sole representative visa entry clearance or an extension of a Sole Representative Visa is refused, then you will have the liberty to ask for an Administrative Review and, potentially, subsequent Judicial Review if the Administrative Review is ineffective.
You should contact our team, as they will analyse the reasons for your refusal and prepare you with the best legal advice and representation.
The Business Plan should contain all the details of business outside of the UK. You have to decide the main objectives and reasons for why you want to expand your business in the UK.
It must be a strong and trading overseas business and will proceed to have its principal office and centre of operations based outside the UK. It aims to open and regulate a branch office or wholly-owned subsidiary in the UK.
The aftermaths of proposing a poorly written business plan that does not address all of these critical questions are very likely to be the refusal of your sole representative application.
At AY&J Solicitors, we assist the people who are facing issues in drafting a great business plan, below mentioned are the steps about how we will help you
UK Visa and Immigration in December 2019, made a declaration that IELTS for UKVI will be acknowledged as one of the secure English language tests (SELT) for all those UK visas that makes it mandatory for applicants to verify their proficiency in the English language.
Brexit has affected the Sole Representative Visa in the right way. Now, the EU and non-EU citizens will be treated equally. This, however, has created a void in the UK marketplace. But the good news is that this in turn has opened up a large pool of opportunities for overseas businesses that had been eyeing for business expansion in the UK. Overseas businesses can now send a representative to the UK to study and capture the market while they can plan and test out different ways to make a name for themselves.
This new immigration rule would be more helpful to businesses, specially with a background in STEM – Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics.
A Y & J Solicitors has a team of skilled professional immigration lawyers ready to walk you through the process of applying for, and successfully acquiring a Sole Representative Visa. We understand the challenges which applicants may face and the extensive documentation which must be supplied. Hence, we can guide you to the process for a successful outcome. We are here to help you with each step of giving rise to your business in the UK.
Based on our experience, it takes around 4-6 weeks to process a Sole Representative Visa application by the Home Office.
The earliest you can apply is 3 months before you travel.
You can get a faster decision by paying for the super premium service.
The fees of getting a sole representative visa program in the UK (Sole Representative Visa) is £610 per applicant plus immigration health surcharge fees of GBP £624/per year/ per person OR GBP £470 per year / per child under 18 years old. They can also charge some extra fees for biometrics and other procedures.
Sole Representatives can be shareholders in the company that is wishing to inaugurate a branch or subsidiary in the UK. However, they can’t be the majority of shareholders. The Home Office will refuse the application if the applicant holds more than 50% of the shares in the parent firm.
Your application for a Sole Representative Visa must be made online unless you are from North Korea. Along with the required documentation, you will also need to supply your biometric details (i.e. fingerprints and photographs). You can have these taken at a local visa application centre.
Both you and the company you work for will need to supply a substantial list of documents when applying for a Sole Representative Visa. Our lawyers can assist you with collating the necessary documents and answer any questions UK Visas and Immigration may have concerning them.
You will need to produce the following:
A Y & J Solicitors is a multi-award-winning, Legal 500 firm that has established its reputation as the best immigration law firm in the UK. We have over 10+ years of Immigration Law experience and have helped 4000+ clients with their UK Visa applications, work permits, visa extensions, and visa renewals including Sole Representative Visas.
A Y & J Solicitors is a team of expert immigration lawyers that can walk you through the process of applying for a Sole Representative Visa. We have been the industry specialists for a long time now and very closely understand the challenges and complexities that the applicants might face during the process and we can help you out!
Yes, you can apply to bring your dependents with you. Dependents are classified as your spouse or partner and/or any children under 18 years.
Under the Immigration Rules, your spouse or partner cannot “have a majority stake in, or otherwise own or control, that overseas business, whether that ownership or control is by means of a shareholding, partnership agreement, sole proprietorship or any other arrangement”.
If you are from a country in which English is the main language, you will not need to prove your knowledge of English. These countries are:
Canada is also considered an English-speaking country, however, qualifications from Canadian higher education institutes may not automatically qualify.
If you do not come from one of these countries, you will need to pass a Secure English language test for UKVI or hold a degree which is:
To set up a branch or their subsidiary in the UK, an overseas company is allowed to send only one sole representative. If the company needs to send more employees, once the branch is established in the UK, they may be able to apply for a sponsor licence. Qualifying employees can make an application under the skilled worker or intra-company transfer route to work in the UK.
We have an in-depth understanding of sole representative and are professional and results-focused. For assistance with any UK immigration law concerns, contact us. We’re here to help!
No, under this visa the only permission you have is to set up a branch or a subsidiary. You cannot move your headquarters to the UK immediately.
Yes, you can make an application to switch into the sole representative category from within the UK, unless you have, or last had permission:
You can apply for an extension from within the UK.
The initial approval of your application gives you the right to remain in the UK for 3 years. You can apply for an extension, which, if approved, will be granted for an additional 2 years. Once you have spent a continuous 5 year period in the UK as a Sole Representative, you may apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) in the UK, provided you meet the requirements. There is no limit on the number of extensions under the Sole Representative category, but you must meet the requirements for an extension.
Yes, a sole representative visa can lead to a British citizenship. If you are married to a British citizen you may qualify you for citizenship as soon as you have been granted ILR status, provided you meet all the requirements. If you are not married to a British citizen then, once you have completed 12 months holding ILR status, you may qualify to apply for British citizenship, provided you meet the requirements.
The only monetary requirement under sole representative visa category is that you should have a healthy bank balance to support yourself during the period of your stay. You should receive a salary based on industry standards and your seniority in the firm.
Join our Q&A Webinar, This would be very helpful for you!
My experience with A Y & J Solicitors was really good. Very detailed and knowledgeable. All my questions were answered on time. They are very approachable and friendly. I would highly recommend them – it may be very simple query or a very complex case; you can trust them.
Having found myself in a rather sticky situation I was desperate for advice/help/guidance. I found A Y & J Solicitors through a friend and with in minutes into my first phone call to them, felt a sense of tremendous peace of mind which I had longed for. Mr Yash spoke very professionally and together with his team went on to do the almost impossible and secure an ‘Out of time’ extremely complicated Tier 2 application for myself and a spouse visa for my wife. Yes they are expensive. But their services are well worth it. They are direct & almost every step of the way they were transparent and kept me updated on the status as and when they knew anything. With out a doubt, I can easily say that our experience with them has been fantastic and would highly recommend their services to any one i know that is looking for a good immigration solicitor. Keep up the excellent work Mr. Yash. God Bless. Thumbs up to the excellent team they have.
I went to Globevisas on a friend’s recommendation and I’m glad I did that. These guys are very helpful and they know what they’re talking about. My ILR application was an extremely smooth experience and was granted without any hassles at all. I would recommend Globevisas to anyone who is looking for help to sort out their visa issues!
An Overseas Business Tries to Expand into the UK Company ‘S’ is a global real estate advisory firm with its parent company based in Dubai. They have branches in several countries in the Middle East and South Asia. Company ‘S’ planned to establish its presence in European countries as part of their expansion plan. They…
We are a specialised UK immigration law firm.
In this video, I will share some tips with you on how to choose a UK immigration lawyer.
There are five very important points you may wish to consider while choosing a UK Immigration Lawyer.
Number 1: UK immigration law is very specific, fast-changing and complex. You should not entrust your future to an individual/company that does not fully comprehend the complexity of UK immigration law. Therefore, our first tip is that you may want to consider choosing a lawyer who specialises in UK immigration law and has a wealth of experience in dealing with UK immigration applications and/or/appeals.
Tip Number 2: You will need a lawyer who will be honest with you. This includes discussions about the success chances of your immigration case, total cost and tentative time frame.
Tip Number 3: A lawyer’s reputation often precedes them – look for a lawyer who is known for honesty. Check out client reviews to see what others have said. When many people rate the same lawyer as honest after their transactions, chances are good that you’ve found an honest lawyer. Check out for independent review platform such as TrustPilot for real and verified reviews from actual clients.
Tip Number 4: How about choosing a lawyer who loves immigration law? One who cannot wait to get started on your case. A passionate lawyer who regularly sees success in immigration matters and tends to deliver great results.
Tip Number 5: Always look for a lawyer who is Authorised and Regulated. In most cases, lawyers in the UK are regulated by the SRA – Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) or by the OISC. Professional certification or Awards are also good indications. It might be prominent on their webpage if they have this.
Finally, look for a lawyer who is always improving by staying up to date on the UK immigration rules and regulations, and is constantly upgrading their skills. This is particularly important in the UK immigration sector, where laws are changed frequently, and lawyers must know exactly what is required for each type of application or appeal.
If you look for these qualities in a lawyer, it is likely that you find someone who is going to take good care of your Immigration matter, while respecting you as a valuable, important individual.
If you require legal assistance with your UK Immigration matter, please get in touch with us. Our contact details are at the bottom of this video. We’re happy to help. Thank you.