UK Innovator Visa

By 29th April 2019 June 18th, 2019 No Comments

The UK Innovator visa scheme was launched on 29 March 2019.  Since then we have seen considerable interest from overseas entrepreneurs looking to relocate to the UK.  Historically, entrepreneurs would make an application for a Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa to start a new business or to join an existing business in the UK, however this scheme is no longer available and it has now been replaced by a new UK innovator visa.

The UK Innovator visa was enforced on 29 March 2019.  The Home Office has only published the guidance notes for endorsing bodies and the guidance notes for applicants are yet to be made available.  The reason for this was that since there was a date set in stone for Brexit on 29 March 2019, the Home Office may have decided to push this through by the deadline.  Hopefully, the guidance notes for potential applications will be made available soon.

The immigration team at Taylor Hampton believes it is likely that the Home Office planned to process the UK Innovator visa in a very similar manner to a Tier 1 Exceptional Talent visa and this is effectively the two-tier processing system.  First, applicants will need to obtain endorsement from a designated endorsing body; second, applicants will be required to make an application for a visa to enable them entry into the UK.  So far, our firm has submitted numerous Tier 1 Exceptional visas and our success rate since the outset of 2018 has been 100%.  Certainly, each individual has their own challenges and our solicitors offer clear and frank advice to those approaching the firm as to the likely success of their applications before we take them on as our clients.

Since the UK Innovator visa has only been launched in the last three weeks, not many law firms would have had their UK Innovator visas granted.  It is hard to gauge the potential success rate of these new UK Innovator visas.  However, due to the similarity of this visa type to a Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa and a Tier 1 Exceptional visa, our solicitors understand how the UK Innovator visas are likely to pan out in reality and how to conduct the client’s case so as to satisfy the requirements of the Home Office and indeed the new endorsing bodies.

We understand that the Home Office plans to grant only 600 UK Innovator Visas every year.  With this in mind, these will be much harder to come by than the Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visas for which approximately 1,000 main applicant visas were granted every year.

Applicants are required to present their business ideas to an endorsing body and our solicitors will offer you guidance as to the best way to set out the business parameters and how to do so clearly in order to obtain endorsement from the endorsing body.  We are already familiar with many of the endorsing bodies.  We have already worked with them on applications for the Tier 1 Exceptional Talent visas submitted on behalf of our clients. These include the Tech Nation for digital technology applications and The Royal Society for natural sciences and medical science research applications.


How Can Taylor Hampton Help You?

If you are looking to apply for a UK Innovator visa, our immigration lawyers are here to help. Staying up-to-date on the latest developments is vital and our solicitors are fully equipped to help you meet any of your business needs. If you need guidance on immigration, contact our experienced immigration solicitors today at: 020 7427 5970 or [email protected] or submit an enquiry here.

Loretta Pang