Investor Visas in the United Kingdom

23 Nov 2017, 45 mins ago

The Tier 1 Investor Visa category is an option for high net worth individuals looking to relocate to the UK.  In order to be eligible, individuals are required to invest a minimum of £2 million into Home Office authorised investments. This route enables individuals to bring family members as their dependants, giving them the right to work and study in the UK.  

There are various requirements that must be met. However, the key requirement is that the applicant must have £2 million, £5 million, or £10 million (in their or their partner’s name) available to make specified investments in the UK. The money does not have to be in the UK at the date of application nor does it have to be in sterling, provided the foreign currency funds held amount to the sterling equivalent. It is important to note that a number of countries have government restrictions in respect of the transfer of currency at this level and an applicant must therefore ensure that the money can be transferred to the UK.

Applicants intending to invest £2 million should be eligible to qualify for Indefinite Leave to Remain (“settled status”) after five years of continuous residence spent in the UK under the investor category. Applicants investing under the £5 million or £10 million investment routes will be placed on a fast-track route to settled status, provided the requirements are met at the time of application.  Please see below a table showing the timeframes for eligibility for Indefinite Leave to Remain and citizenship: 



£2 million

£5 million

£10 million

ILR- Main applicant

5 years

3 years

2 years

Citizenship- Main applicant

6 years 

5 years

5 years


In order to achieve settlement the applicant must not be absent from the UK for more than 180 days in any 12-month period. It is important to note that the rules to obtain citizenship are slightly different. Currently, there is no absence requirement to be met by dependent family members, and provided they meet the additional requirements they should be able to achieve settled status after 5 years, regardless of their absences. Should the main applicant wish to be absent from the UK for longer periods of time, the investor visa can be renewed without time limitation by way of extension. However, this could affect an applicant’s eligibility for gaining Indefinite Leave to Remain status.

Usually, an application will need to be made from overseas, either in a country in which the applicant holds legal residence or the country of their nationality. However, there are some circumstances in which an applicant is able to make the application from within the UK.  Criminal record checks covering the last 10 years are required for both the main applicant and any adult dependants.

Gherson has an experienced team who specialise in assisting with investor visas and has been doing so since 1993.  We are widely regarded as one of the leading firms in this field and have received a number of awards for our services.

Should you require any clarification in respect of the above in relation to your personal circumstances or require any additional information about the Tier 1 Investor Visa category please do not hesitate to contact us.


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 don’t 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.

©Gherson 2017