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Sole Representative Visa - Employees

Introduction ( top )

This visa is designed for an overseas company that wishes to expand it's business into the UK and requires someone to be on the ground here to represent that business. It is not for those wishing to start their own business here.

Does My Company Qualify? ( top )

It must be seen as viable for the company to be expanding into the UK. The company should be over a year old ; have a workable budget for the expansion ; unless a large company, it should be within a current company business model and it should continue to run most of its business from outside the UK.

Am I A Suitable Person? ( top )

You need to be a senior employee of the company ; long service will be preferred to a new recruit specially for the purpose ; you should not own more than 30% of the shareholding of the company and will need to pass a medical examination.

Can My Family Come Too? ( top )

Yes they can. Your spouse, partner and children can enjoy the same benefits as UK people including free education, free healthcare and the ability to work in the UK.

What Happens When I Need to Renew This Visa? ( top )

After your initial 12 month visa period, you can apply for an extension of up to 3 years as long as you are still needed by your employer ; can provide adeqate year one accounts for the business in the UK ; can prove you have been earning an appropriate remuneration for your position.

When this further 3 year period is completed you may apply for Permanent Residence in the UK and, 1 year after that, naturalisation.

What Supporting Evidence is Required? ( top )

Confirmation of your seniority within the company and your understanding of the full nature of the company's business ; previous years company accounting data ; confirmation from your employer that they wish to set up in the UK, that they will keep the company's operations based outside the UK, that you will be their only representative in the UK, that they currently do not have a UK operation and that you have all associated powers of control in the UK operation. You should provide the relevant employment contract and an undertaking that the representative will work only for the company. You will also need to submit your passport.

Please also submit a comprehensive business plan for the UK operation outling the exact nature of the company's business and your role and remuneration.

How Do I Apply? ( top )

Applications containing the correct supporting evidence and form submissions should normally be processed within 2 weeks. Where data is incomplete or requirements are not entirely met, applications may be passed to the UK for a decision. This may take up to 9 months to process and highlights the importance of absolute adherence to documentary requirements.

There are a variety of forms that will need to be completed depending on whether you are already here in the UK or outside the UK and will be submitted either here or in your own country.

As the forms page, the forms and notes make clear, it is vital that you provide all the supporting evidence for a successful application. If you do not, you are less likely to succeed.

You are advised not to proceed with an application if you are unsure whether you qualify or not. It is better to contact us if you are in any doubt.

Your business plan is very important and should show evidence of the money you will invest in the business ; what the business will be doing ; ownership and accounting information ; financial projections ; your qualifications and work experience.

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