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United Kingdom (UK)

Open a branch in UK- UK sole representative visa

 QICMS

Published   02:10 PM 15 November 2021
Updated    01:35 PM 24 November 2021

Open a branch in UK- UK sole representative visa

DO YOU WANT TO SET UP A BRANCH IN THE UNITED KINGDOMFOR YOUR BUSINESS?

If the answer is yes, then you must apply for the sole representative visa. The Sole Representative visa program is for an overseas business planning to set up a branch or subsidiary in the United Kingdom (UK). It’s intra company transfer visa category for UK.

WHAT IS THE UK SOLE REPRESENTATIVE VISA?

Officially known as the Representative of an Overseas Business visa or the overseas representative visa, this visa category facilitates small and medium enterprises from other countries to quickly and easily expand to the UK with very little investment. It is intended to establish the overseas business’s first commercial presence in the UK, either as a registered branch or a wholly-owned subsidiary.

You may apply for the sole representative visa if you are the sole representative of an overseas business, aiming to start a wholly-owned subsidiary or register a branch in the UK for an overseas parent business (Employer). The overseas parent business (Employer) must have its head office and main place of business outside the UK and it must have no other representative, subsidiary or branch, in the UK. The UK branch company will have an identical kind of business activity as the overseas company.

 

WHAT IS THE VISA DURATION FOR UK SOLE REPRESENTATIVE VISA?

A Sole representative visa is granted for a period of 3 years and can be extended by a further 2 years on application.

 

WHO CAN APPLY FOR THE SOLE REPRESENTATIVE VISA?

For an applicant to make a successful application as a sole representative of an overseas business that has headquarter and principal place of business outside the UK, you must:

  1. not be a majority shareholder in that overseas company.

  2. not own or control the parent company either directly or indirectly.

  3. be a senior employee within a company whose headquarters are outside of the UK.

  4. have full power as well as the ability to make significant decisions on behalf of the overseas company.

  5. plan to work full-time for the branch and not intend to work outside the subsidiary in the UK.

  6. meet the required standard in the English language. You must speak and Understand English to CEFR Level A1.

  7. provide proof that you can maintain and accommodate yourself and any dependants without recourse to public funds.

 

To recap as an applicant , you should not 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

 

HOW LONG WILL IT TAKE TO PROCESS MY SOLE REPRESENTATIVE VISA?

If one applies from outside the UK, the earliest you can apply is 3 months before you travel. The UK government says a decision on the visa application is made within 3 weeks when one applies from outside the UK.

 

WHAT IS THE MINIMUM INVESTMENT REQUIRED FOR THE SOLE REPRESENTATIVE VISA?

There is no minimum investment requirement. But ideally, businesses should have at least GBP 50,000 worth of disposable funds.

 

WHAT ARE THE SOLE REPRESENTATIVE VISA REQUIREMENTS RELATED TO THE OVERSEAS PARENT COMPANY?

  1. The parent company must be a legit commercial business with its principal place of business outside the UK.

  2. The parent company must Have, and continue to have, its headquarters and principal place of business outside the United Kingdom.

  3. The nature of business of the parent company must be the same as the intended subsidiary in the UK.

  4.  The parent company should not have an active branch, subsidiary or other representative in the UK.

  5. The parent company must be an active and trading overseas business.

 

AS A HOLDER OF THE UK SOLE REPRESENTATIVE VISA, WHAT CAN YOU DO?

  1. Bring your family (dependants) with you to the UK.

  2. Extend your visa multiple times.

 

AS A HOLDER OF THE UK SOLE REPRESENTATIVE VISA, WHAT CAN NOT YOU DO?

  1. Work for yourself or any other business.

  2. Stay in the UK if the sole representative arrangement is ended byyour employer.

  3. Switch to this visa from any other visa category. It is not possible to switch to the Representative of an Overseas Business category from another immigration category. Therefore, if you currently have leave to remain in the UK in another immigration category you will need to leave the UK in order to apply for entry clearance as a Representative of an Overseas Business.

  4. Get public funds.

 

CAN I MAKE MY WIFE THE MAIN APPLICANT ON A SOLE REPRESENTATIVE VISA, AND THEN COME INTO THE UK AS THE DEPENDENT?

You cannot make your wife the main applicant on a sole representative visa, and then come into the UK as the dependent, if cumulatively you and your wife own the majority shares in the company.

 

DOES A SOLE REPRESENTATIVE VISA LEAD TO UK CITIZENSHIP?

The initial visa is granted for a period of 3 years and can be extended for a further 2 years. Migrants would be eligible for Indefinite Leave to Remain after completing 5 continuous years, if certain criteria are met and for British citizenship after 6 years in the United Kingdom. Gain British citizenship via sole representative visa. Start today!

 

HOW CAN WE HELP YOU?

Our specialist team of representative of overseas business visa experts can provide trustworthy services for your sole representative visa entry clearance application. Need help and assistance with sole representative visa entry clearance? Contact us now!

Establish a global business presence with a Sole representative visa. For more information on Permanent Residency through Investment in the United Kingdom program, please click here.

For more news about the United Kingdom program, please click here.

Fill out our Free Assessment to find out if you qualify for any of the immigration programs offered.  

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