UK Self-Sponsorship is a visa route that allows you to operate in the country for your own business without needing a UK Sponsor. Companies looking to expand in the UK now have very few options, which has had a number of downsides since the Investor visa route was terminated. On the other hand, the Self-Sponsorship visa could be a workable solution to this problem. Self-sponsorship is a unique idea that few are familiar with, but it may be the best choice for companies who are unable to follow the more popular routes to international growth in the United Kingdom. Simple conditions must be met in order to apply for a Self-sponsorship visa. All you need to establish a business and run a commercial operational organisation in the UK is an honest desire to do so.
To understand Self-sponsorship better, we have answered some very frequently asked questions.
Here are the top 10 FAQs:
- Who is qualified to self-sponsor?
The Self-sponsorship path can be appropriate for you if you are a successful businessperson who has discovered a business opportunity or has a brilliant business concept and wants to explore your potential in the United Kingdom. With self-sponsorship, you may live in the UK without worrying about losing your visa while simultaneously managing, operating, and maintaining your business there.
The following qualifications must be fulfilled in order to qualify for self-sponsorship:
- You have a business concept or have found an existing UK company to take over.
- Have knowledge, expertise, or certification in the area of the business they desire to launch.
- Have enough resources to support your anticipated UK business.
- Know a UK resident or citizen who can assume the responsibilities of the Authorising Officer for you.
- You’ll have to meet the English Language criteria as per the Home Office requirements.
- Can I bring my partner/spouse and children?
Yes, you can bring your partner/spouse and children to the UK under the Self-sponsorship route. Since you are your own sponsor, you can come to the UK on a Skilled Worker visa, which allows you to bring your dependents to the country. They are free to live and work in the UK.
- Can I serve as a director and 100% shareholder of the UK company?
Yes, you are permitted to own 100% of the stock of your UK-based firm under the Self-sponsorship route.
You may be one of the company’s primary owners in the UK, and your job title might be anything from managing director to director of operations, depending on what you need to do to operate your company.
- What are the investment requirements for Self-Sponsorship in the UK?
There are no minimum or maximum investment requirements for your business endeavour. Depending on your company’s demands, it might range from £25,000 to more than £50,000.
However, getting a Skilled Worker Visa will cost you between £464 to £1408. You must keep in mind a few other costs, including the Immigration Health Surcharge, which is now £624 for individuals and £470 for dependent children.
- How to Submit a Self-Sponsored Visa Application?
A self-sponsorship visa application consists of three steps. Smaller business owners can establish or acquire a company in the UK, register it with the government agency that issues sponsorship permits, and then use the permit to submit an application for a Skilled Worker visa.
Establishing a business in the UK and applying for a sponsor licence, which enables you to sponsor an overseas worker on a Skilled Worker visa, are the initial steps. Then you are free to employ yourself as your company’s knowledgeable employee. You will essentially be supporting yourself by coming here and working for yourself. The procedure complies with all laws and regulations.
The next stage is to submit an application for a Skilled Worker sponsor licence to the UK Home Office once the UK company is operational. A firm must meet certain criteria in order to succeed. For instance, the company must have created crucial policies and procedures. To ensure a smooth transition, it is advisable that the self-sponsorship visa application be carried out with the guidance and support of a UK legal practitioner.
The next step is to recruit yourself via your own company and submit an application for a skilled worker visa based on the job offer after your UK firm has been granted a Sponsor Licence. To qualify for a skilled worker visa, you must meet a number of criteria, including those relating to education level, wage, and English language proficiency. If you achieve these requirements, you will be qualified to work for your UK company and benefit from the growing economy of the nation.
- How long is the processing time for self-sponsorship visas?
Creating a corporation in the UK and applying for a sponsor licence is the first step.
A licenced UK accountant can assist you with registering your UK firm. You must first choose a Director based in the UK if you don’t live there. You could own majority ownership in a UK-based business and hold positions like managing director, director of operations, or anything else you need to run your business.
It will take 6 to 8 weeks to complete this process.
Stage 2: Prepare and provide your UK organisation with a human resources package.
As part of the sponsor licence application process, you must confirm that your organisation has the necessary procedures and policies in place to sponsor you as a skilled worker. It should take two days.
Obtaining a Certificate of Sponsorship and applying for a Skilled Worker Visa is stage three.
Following the approval of your UK company Sponsor licence, you will require a Defined Certificate of Sponsorship. It can take between 4 and 12 weeks.
The validity of the visa is between three and five years once it has been approved.
- What are the benefits of Self-Sponsorship Visas?
A good substitute for conventional UK visas is a self-sponsorship visa because it has fewer restrictions and application requirements. In addition to giving business owners the chance to become British citizens, it gives foreign companies access to the British SME market. Under this policy, there are no limitations on the kind of business that may be carried out in the United Kingdom. Furthermore, you can own 100% of your company and serve as its director in the UK; there is no requirement for a minimum or maximum investment.
- Can I work anywhere else in the UK?
Since you are coming to the UK on a Skilled Worker visa under the Self-sponsorship route, it could be possible to find supplementary employment that fits your job classification.
However, since you are your own sponsor, it is a good idea to keep your UK-based firm up and running.
- What would happen to your visa status or sponsor licence if the business did not do successfully over the course of the five-year period?
The Sponsor Licence is valid for 4 years; to renew it, submit an application to the Home Office at the conclusion of that time. You may continue to use the sponsor licence as long as your firm is operational and trading. If your company were to cease operations, you would have to change your immigration status.
- What kind of business is qualified for self-sponsorship?
Any company with a sponsor licence in the UK is eligible to participate in self-sponsorship.
Your organisation must be legally functioning or transacting in the UK in order to be eligible to apply for a sponsor licence. You must provide evidence that you (and any branches covered by the licence) are registered with the appropriate authority if you are needed to be inspected/monitored by the body or registered with it in order to operate legally in the UK. You might also need to provide proof that you have the necessary planning authorization or local planning authority approval to operate your kind of company at your registered office.
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