Innovator Founder vs Skilled Worker Visa: Key Differences

21 Nov 2023, 57 mins ago

The UK offers various avenues for individuals seeking to relocate for work or entrepreneurial endeavours. The Innovator Founder Visa and the Skilled Worker Visa cater to different aspirations and skill sets. In this blog, we will explore the key differences between these two immigration routes and help you understand which one might be the right fit for your goals.

Purpose and Eligibility:

  • Innovator Founder Visa:

The Innovator Founder Visa is designed for entrepreneurs with innovative business ideas. To be eligible, applicants must have an endorsed business plan from an approved endorsing body, demonstrating the viability and innovation of their business concept. This visa is tailored to those looking to establish a new business or take over an existing one in the UK.

  • Skilled Worker Visa:

The Skilled Worker Visa is aimed at individuals with particular skills matching specific job offers in the UK. This visa requires sponsorship from a UK employer, and applicants must meet certain eligibility criteria, including a job offer at the required skill level and English language proficiency.

Endorsement vs Sponsorship:

  • Innovator Founder Visa:

The Innovator Founder Visa involves obtaining an endorsement from a recognised endorsing body. The endorsing body plays a crucial role in assessing the business plan and ensuring that it meets the necessary criteria.

  • Skilled Worker Visa:

The Skilled Worker Visa, by contrast, requires sponsorship from a UK employer. The sponsoring employer must be a licensed sponsor, and the job offer must meet specific skill and salary requirements. The employer plays a central role in the application process, guiding the employee through the visa process.

Long-Term Goals:

  • Innovator Founder Visa:

The Innovator Founder Visa is ideal for individuals with a long-term vision of establishing and growing their business in the UK. It provides a pathway to settlement and eventual British citizenship, allowing entrepreneurs to contribute to the UK economy in the long run.

  • Skilled Worker Visa:

The Skilled Worker Visa, whilst initially focused on employment, can also lead to settlement in the UK. After a certain period of continuous residence, Skilled Worker Visa holders may be eligible to apply for settlement and eventually British citizenship.

Choosing between the Innovator Founder Visa and the Skilled Worker Visa depends on your specific goals, skills, and aspirations. Whether you are an entrepreneur with an innovative business idea or a skilled professional seeking employment in the UK, understanding the key differences between these visa routes is crucial for a successful and smooth immigration journey.

How Gherson can assist

Gherson’s Immigration Team are highly experienced in advising on UK visa matters. If you have any questions arising from this blog, please do not hesitate to contact us for advice, send us an e-mail, or, alternatively, follow us on TwitterFacebookInstagram, or LinkedIn to stay-up-to-date.

The information in this blog is for general information purposes only and does not purport to be comprehensive or to provide legal advice. Whilst every effort is made to ensure the information and law is current as of the date of publication it should be stressed that, due to the passage of time, this does not necessarily reflect the present legal position. Gherson accepts no responsibility for loss which may arise from accessing or reliance on information contained in this blog. For formal advice on the current law please do not hesitate to contact Gherson. Legal advice is only provided pursuant to a written agreement, identified as such, and signed by the client and by or on behalf of Gherson.

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