A proposed suspension of the Tier 1 Investor visa route, effective from midnight on Friday 7 December 2018, was widely reported at the end of last week. But as of now, the route remains open. Our head of immigration, Nichola Carter, considers recent events.
‘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.’
This immediately caused concern. The suspension of an immigration route quite so abruptly is an unusual move by the Government – generally applicants are given at least some weeks notice.
But by the weekend, as we waited for an official announcement from the Government before advising our clients, it remained possible to make a visa application to enter the route. That remains the case.
Pressure from other departments
The Times has looked into last week’s events and reported, on 11 December, that opposition from other Government departments is the reason for the delay to the suspension of the scheme.
Future suspension of the scheme and wider changes to Tier 1
The Home Office confirmed on 11 December, via the Immigration Law Practitioners’ Association of which we are members, that: ‘A further announcement will be made in due course. Any suspension would be implemented through changes to the Immigration Rules’.
The Minister has also announced that a number of changes to the Immigration Rules are on the horizon.
Our advice to those who are planning on making an application under the Tier 1 Investor visa route in its current form is to do so as soon as possible.
How we can assist
The expertise of our immigration team is recognised in The Legal 500, Chambers and Partners, Who’s Who Legal, The Times Best Law Firms and many other independent legal directories. If you need further information about the Tier 1 Investor visa or any other category of the Immigration Rules, please contact us.