Tier 1 Entrepreneur Interviews

UK Entrepreneur Visa Interview

As part of your UK Entrepreneur visa application, you may be required to attend a UK Entrepreneur visa interview. The Home Office may ask you to attend an interview to test your knowledge of the proposed business, go through your business plan, ascertain your long-term goals and test your credibility or intention. The UK Entrepreneur visa interview will help the visa officer make a decision on your application.

Genuine Entrepreneur Test

Since the introduction of the “Genuine Entrepreneur Test”, a UK Entrepreneur visa interview has become an essential element of the UK Entrepreneur Visa process. A UK Entrepreneur visa interview is the simplest way for a visa officer to determine whether an applicant meets the Genuine Entrepreneur Test. The Genuine Entrepreneur Test is a set of factors used by visa officers to test the credibility of an applicant and the viability of their business.

With this in mind, it is important to prepare thoroughly. You should read your business plan including financials in detail and be fully familiar with the content of your UK Entrepreneur visa application.

The UK visa officer’s questions will depend on the detail you have already submitted within your application and your specific circumstances, but there are a number of areas you should consider in advance and in-depth.

They may ask for information about your long-term goals, your previous educational and business experience, your knowledge of the business plan, your family, your immigration history and previous activity in the UK.

Qualifications and Experience

You will need to prove that you have the experience, education and requisite entrepreneurial skills to launch your business in the UK.

  1. How is your previous experience relevant to your proposed business?
  2. Can you explain how your previous experience will help you to implement your business in the UK?
  3. How is your educational background linked to the business?
  4. If your experience or degree is not linked to your business, what transferable skills will you employ in your UK business?
  5. What made you choose this particular business?

Establishing your Business in the UK

  1. Why have you chosen the UK for your business?
  2. Did you consider other countries as alternatives?
  3. Are there any team members in your business plan?
  4. How did you become a team?
  5. What will be the role for each team member in the business?
  6. How will each team member contribute to the business?
  7. Why have you chosen to pursue this business in particular?
  8. What research have you done to date on your business idea?
  9. What have you done so far to set up the business? Is it registered?
  10. Do you have any professional advisers? What are their roles?

Business Plan

You must study the business plan in depth as you are expected to have a clear understanding of the business.

  1. Who wrote the Business Plan?
  2. Please explain your business.
  3. What sort of Insurance and how much coverage do you require for your business?
  4. What is the minimum wage in the UK?
  5. What kind of premises would you acquire/let and what are their dimensions?
  6. Would you mortgage or lease a property and what will be the estimated rental cost of your business premises?
  7. How many employees do you intend to recruit at the start of business and what annual salaries do you intend to pay them?
  8. What is your marketing strategy?
  9. What marketing methods will you use?
  10. Have you registered your business with the appropriate UK bodies? If so, who?
  11. Is anyone else involved in your business? What are their roles? What is their contribution?

Prospects of your Business Succeeding

You will need to prove that you have studied the market, competitors and financial projections, which have given you the confidence that your business venture will be a success.

  1. Please explain the increase in revenue and profit between year 1, 2 and 3?
  2. How confident are you that the business will generate profits in the first year?
  3. Where do you see yourself and your business in three years time?
  4. Who are your main competitors in the UK?
  5. What advantage or unique selling point do you have over your competitors?
  6. What market research have you undertaken in relation to the area in which your business will be located?
  7. Which UK city do you intend to establish this business in?
  8. Why did you choose this specific city/area?
  9. How will you cover unexpected additional running costs for your business?
  10. What threats have you identified to your business succeeding?

Immigration History

You will need to discuss your immigration history.

  1. How many times have you visited the UK and what was the purpose of each of your trips?
  2. Did you consider alternative visa programs to the UK Entrepreneur visa program?
  3. Do you have any relatives in the UK?
  4. What are your long-term UK immigration goals?
  5. Do you intend to apply for UK permanent residence or do you plan on returning to your country of origin?

UK Entrepreneur Visa Interview Record

With 78% of UK entrepreneur visa applications being refused, It is important to ensure that an accurate written record of your UK Entrepreneur visa interview is made by the visa officer or that the interview is tape recorded. If your application is refused, the interview record or notes will form the basis of a challenge by way of Administrative Review.

In the case of Anjum (2017) UKUT 406 (IAC), the Upper Tribunal criticised the interviewing visa officer for failing to carry out essential probing and follow-up questions that were essential to a fair interview. In particular, the UK Entrepreneur visa interview record showed that there had been confusion between the applicant’s existing business’s revenue before and after he had acquired a new business to add to it.

Need help with a UK Entrepreneur Visa?

Sterling Immigration have a strong track record advising entrepreneurs and high net worth individuals on their immigration needs, including submitting persuasive business plans, applications and legal submissions in support of UK Entrepreneur visa applications.

For help and advice with your visa application, please contact us.