Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur Visaâ€‹
The Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur visa category is for non-EEA nationals who want to set up a business in the UK and who have been endorsed by a UK Higher Education Institution or the Department for International Trade as having a credible business idea and entrepreneurial skills.
What are the main eligibility requirements for a Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur visa?
In order to qualify for a Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur visa, you will need to satisfy UK Visas and Immigration that you have a degree, either from the UK or from an overseas education institution which has been confirmed as equivalent to a UK degree by UK NARIC.
You will also need to have an endorsement from a UK Higher Educational Institution or the Department for International Trade issued within the last 3 months.
Your endorsement must confirm that you have a genuine and credible business idea and that you will spend the majority of your time on your business venture.
You must be able to speak English to a required standard and support yourself in the UK without recourse to public funds.
What else do I need to know about the Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur visa?
There is a limit of 2,000 endorsements which can be given each year. Of these, the Department for International Trade can only endorse 100 applications.
You will not be able to apply to enter this category if you have ever held leave as a Tier 1 Post Study Work migrant.
You can switch into this category if you have, or last held, leave as a Tier 4 General Student or a Tier 2 General Migrant. Individuals in other categories will need to leave the UK and apply for Entry Clearance as a Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur.
If your application for a Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur visa is successful, you will be granted leave for a period of one year initially, which can be extended for one further year.
At any stage, after being granted leave as a Graduate Entrepreneur you will be able to switch into the Tier 1 Entrepreneur category if you have access to £50,000. The Tier 1 Entrepreneur category can lead to a settlement in the UK.
Your partner and any children under the age of 18 may accompany or join you as the Family Member of a PBS migrant.