The UK Home Office has temporarily paused its list of approved Endorsing Bodies for Start-Up and Innovator visa applications, such that no new organisations will be added to the list in the near future.
The pause on Endorsing Body applications is likely linked to the UK Government’s recently announced ‘Innovation Strategy’ and proposed changes to the Innovator visa category.
The Innovation Strategy dossier, as prepared by the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy, refers to “a revitalised Innovator route” to be expected in the future. Under the revised route, the UK Home Office proposes to:
- Simplify and streamline the business eligibility criteria: Applicants will need to demonstrate that their business venture has high potential to grow and add value to the UK.
- Fast-track applications: The UK government is exploring a fast-track, lighter touch endorsement process for applicants whose business ideas are particularly advanced to match the best-in-class international offers. Applicants that have been accepted on to the Department for International Trade’s Global Entrepreneur Programme will be automatically eligible.
- Build flexibility: Applicants will no longer be required to have at least £50,000 in investment funds to apply for an Innovator visa, provided that the endorsing body is satisfied the applicant has sufficient funds to grow their business. The restriction on doing work outside of the applicant’s primary business will also be removed.
Full Home Office guidance on any changes to the Innovator visa category is yet to be released, however, Gherson continues to monitor closely for updates.
If you have any queries relating to the Start-Up or Innovator categories, or are interested in talking to us about your specific circumstances, please do not hesitate to contact us for advice, send us an e-mail, or alternatively, follow us on Twitter, Facebook, 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 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.
Solicitor in our General Immigration Department