Startup Visa UK- the new buzzword in British academia. There has been confusion regarding the future of entrepreneurial options for immigrant students in the UK who are about to graduate soon and have ambitions of utilizing their UK education to launch a business in the UK itself. However, this confusion is a natural and expected symptom in every aspect of UK life in current times, with seismic shifts in its political landscape. Keep an eye on The SmartMove2UK’s Brexit updates.

However, since the reason behind this situation of frequent changes in rules and policy can be pinpointed to Brexit, there is hope. Hope with good reason. It’s only a matter of time before the UK (choice or no choice) regroups and bounces back on the global innovation scene. The deals are not in place now, but they will be.

Predictions of prosperity in such seemingly ‘unprosperous’ times are well backed by the gradual changes the Home Office is bringing into the immigration rules of the UK. Like for example, the rule that will cut out a clear path for migrant students who are soon to complete their graduate courses in the United Kingdom: The new Startup Visa.

The Startup visa is scheduled to replace the Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur Visa; the current visa option for graduate students with business plans ready to launch immediately after their course of study ends. This visa can be seen as an extension of the Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur Visa in many ways, not just a replacement. A ‘new and improved’ version, if you will.

Some of the highlights of the new Startup Visa UK include:

Application Fee for Startup visa from inside and outside the UK

From March 29, 2019, the UK visa fee for a startup visa entry clearance and leave to remain applications will be £363 and £493, respectively. Moreover, the main applicant can also avail a Council of Europe Social Charter (CESC) discount of £55.

A startup migrant can stay in the UK for 2 years

The length of leave for initial applications under the startup visa UK is 2 years. Moreover, the length of leave for an extension application under the startup visa is also 2 years, minus the time already granted in Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur) and Startup categories. Therefore, the maximum time an applicant can spend in the UK under the startup worker visa is 2 years. If an applicant has already been granted the maximum time in the startup category, then any further application will be refused. However, an applicant can switch from startup to innovator visa

[We will be posting the highlights of this other innovative option for entrepreneurial migrants to the UK in our Innovator Visa UK article tomorrow. Drop in an email at with the subject line “Brexit” and a blank body, to be informed as soon as we publish this post.]

Is the Startup Visa different from the Graduate Entrepreneur Visa, besides the changes in magnitude (of time and money)?

Yes indeed. Here’s how.

There is no Requirement for graduation and funding for a startup visa

Unlike its predecessor, an applicant applying for a startup visa does not need to be a graduate or secure any initial funding. Moreover, a successful applicant may get up to 2-year leave, instead of 1-year under the Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur route. Furthermore, after 2-years a startup migrant will have the option to switch to innovator visa under Appendix W for further developing business in the UK.

Back on the up!

For our associates here at The Smartmove2UK (a unit of SmartMove Immigration), these qualities of the startup Visa highlighted above, make it a great statement on behalf of the British government that they want to move forward in the right way. Encouraging innovation, which is precisely what the new Startup Visa UK does, is a sign that a nation is back on its way up.

Furthermore, our associates had indeed written about how the Startup Visa might be a great new option for migrant entrepreneurs to the UK from 2019, way back in June of 2018. Have a look at our original article on the startup visa here. For information on how you can apply successfully with the help of our legal assistance, fill out the form below and one of our associates will be in touch with you very shortly.

When it comes to UK Visas and Immigration, SmartMove Immigration is always one step ahead of the curve. If you would like to be as well, then drop in your email below to subscribe to regular and relevant updates on immigration rules, news updates, and for the time being, good old fashioned Brexit.

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