07.12.2018 Tier 1 (Investor) Visa Scheme Suspended

07.12.2018 Tier 1 (Investor) Visa Scheme Suspended

The UK decided to suspend Tier 1 (Investor) visa for new applicants from midnight on 7 December 2018 until the new stricter rules are put in place in 2019.

Tier 1 investor visas were introduced in 2008 to encourage wealthy individuals from outside the EU to invest in the UK. A £2m investment bought a visa and indefinite leave to remain after five years. But concerns were raised the scheme was being used to launder money.

The ultra rich individuals from outside the EU hoping to live and invest in the UK will now face new requirements and restrictions as part of the Home Office reforms designed to tackle organised crime and money laundering.

The new rules will require applicants to provide comprehensive audits of their financial and business interests, and show that the applicants have had control of the £2m of investment funds, required to obtain the Tier 1 visa for at least two years. As part of the reforms, the applicants will no longer be allowed to invest in government bonds and must invest in active and trading UK companies.

Immigration minister Caroline Nokes said: “The UK will always be open to legitimate and genuine investors who are committed to helping our economy and businesses grow. However, I have been clear that we will not tolerate people who do not play by the rules and seek to abuse the system.

“That is why I am bringing forward these new measures which will make sure that only genuine investors, who intend to support UK businesses, can benefit from our immigration system.”

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