The Skilled Worker visa category is for ambitious individuals and entrepreneurs to start their career in the UK.

The Skilled Worker by investment route allows ambitious individuals to come to the UK to start their career with full-time employment and investment. The ‘self-sponsorship’ route allows entrepreneurs to set up a business in the UK and work for their own business under the Skilled Worker visa, removing the need for a UK sponsor.

If you are looking to begin a career in the UK whilst also building your investment portfolio, then the Skilled Worker visa by investment route may be the route for you.

To apply for the UK Innovator visa, applicants must meet the following criteria:

  • You are at least 18 years old;
  • You need to be employed by a UK employer approved by the Home Office;
  • Level B1 English language requirement (equal to IELTS 4.0);
  • You must have been assigned a certificate of sponsorship by your employer, detailing the UK-based role you have been offered;
  • Your job must be within the list of approved occupations;
  • You must be paid at least the minimum salary for your work. This is whichever of the following is the highest: £26,200 a year, £10.75 per hour, or the ‘going rate’ for the type of job role.

The time it takes for a decision to be made on your application depends on several factors, including where you made the application from, where any information is outstanding and whether you have purchased a priority service.

Response times vary from a few weeks to months, and since you must first receive endorsement from an endorsing body, the process can take longer. The response time can be sped up by applying for a priority service, which is available to customers in many countries.

  • You will have the opportunity to apply for indefinite leave to remain (ILR) after 5 years so that you can live and work in the country indefinitely.
  • You will have employment and a salary.
  • You can bring your dependants to the UK.

Our multi-lingual business consultancy team is highly experienced in helping international businesspersons and entrepreneurs to prepare for a career in the UK.

In addition, our visa consultancy team can help you with all the necessary documentation to apply to a range of suitable endorsing bodies and assist in the process of making a visa application to the UK Home Office.

InvestUK has a 5-step process to help you apply with peace of mind. Our team will support you in areas such as;

  • Assessing your needs and evaluating your eligibility against the required criteria;
  • Assisting with optimising your business ideas for the UK market;
  • Helping you plan and prepare for the later steps of the application process;
  • Confirming your successful application and supporting you with the formation and opening of bank accounts;
  • Continued support for you and your new business even after you have received your Innovator visa.

InvestUK will support you with more than simply an Innovator visa application: |InvestUK also provides optional business support services for your business once you have obtained a visa.

As well as a business mentoring service, InvestUK can provide you with lifestyle planning services during your time in the UK including wealth, tax management and education consultancy services.

Why choose the UK to start your business?

Why choose the UK?

Read our top reasons why the UK is the best place for new and experienced entrepreneurs to start a business.

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Visa programmes

Discover the Innovator, skilled worker and UK Expansion visas, enabling international entrepreneurs to start a UK business.

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InvestUK is not regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Financial Services Compensation Scheme established for the protection of investors does not apply.