Tier 1 Visa Category Changes Replace Entrepreneur Visa with Start-up and Innovator

Tier 1 Entrepreneur and Graduate Entrepreneur visas has been replaced with Start-up and Innovator visas The Tier 1 Visa category is undergoing significant changes starting this April 2019 as per the statement of changes to the Immigration Rules published on 7 March 2019. The statement published by the Home Office and UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) has laid out the changes and confirmed that the proposed changes will come in effect starting 29 March 2019.

The TL;DR version is that the existing Entrepreneur and Graduate Entrepreneur categories are being replaced with new Start-up and Innovator categories and the Investor category under the same route is undergoing significant reforms.

Settled Status in the UK refers to the immigration status granted to eligible EU, EEA, and Swiss citizens, as well as their family members, who were living in the UK before the end of the Brexit transition period (December 31, 2020). It allows individuals to continue living and working in the UK without any immigration restrictions. Settled Status is part of the UK government’s EU Settlement Scheme, which was introduced to protect the rights of EU citizens and their family members residing in the UK after Brexit. Once granted Settled Status, individuals are granted the right to stay indefinitely in the UK and enjoy various benefits and services.


The Tier 1 visa category has lately gained a lot of attention with regard to changes as it has been thoroughly scrutinised by the UKVI. Back in December 2018, the Immigration Minister Caroline Nokes announced the suspension of the Tier 1 Investor visa category with less than 24 hours notice. The suspension came almost after three years since the publication of the Transparency International’s report in 2015, which criticized the apparent vulnerability of the Tier 1 Investor visa.

Without enough arrangements and alternatives in place, the Home Office decided to delay the suspension of Tier 1 visas in 2018 and reassured their commitment to reform this route. The immigration rule changes published back in December 2018 didn’t confirm the Tier 1 category changes with planned updates due in March 2019. Towards the end of the year, a written ministerial statement proposing the new visa routes and reforming the existing Tier 1 Entrepreneur categories was submitted by the Immigration Minister.

Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR), also referred to as settlement or permanent residency, is an immigration status in the UK that offers individuals the privilege of residing and working in the country without any limitations on their duration of stay. ILR bestows various advantages upon individuals, including access to public funds, healthcare services, and educational opportunities. With ILR, individuals can establish their long-term presence in the UK, enjoying the freedom to live and work indefinitely.


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