- The UK Sole Representative Visa will be officially cancelled at 9am UK time on April 11, 2022.
- For visa holders who have already been granted this visa, applications for extension at Year 3 and permanent residence at year 5 will not be affected.
The Sole Representative program is targeted at companies who wish to send senior managers in the parent company to set up a branch or subsidiary in the UK.
The parent company needs to prove that the company’s headquarter and principal country of business are outside the UK, and there are no subsidiaries, branches, or other sole representatives in the UK.
The parent company needs to provide a financial audit report of the most recent year to prove that the company has a stable revenue and net profit. Company’s bank statements are also needed to prove that the company has sufficient funds as operating expenses in the UK.
The current Immigration law does not indicate the specific financial requirements for revenue, net profit nor company deposits. The amount required varies according to individual industries.
This visa does not have any restrictions nor limitations of the business nature. The UK subsidiary needs to engage in the same field of business as the parent company. During the five-year period, the parent company outside the UK has to remain as the company’s headquarters and continue to be actively operating outside the UK.
Applicant must have been employed by the parent company, holding a senior position outside the UK, with extensive industry experience and knowledge within the relevant business scope. Applicant will hold full decision-making power in the UK subsidiary.
In addition, the applicant cannot be a major shareholder of the company. They can hold not more than 49% of the company shares.
The applicant must show that they can meet the required English level. If the applicant holds a UK degree or above (ie. Degree/Master/PHD, please note that Diploma or Associate Degree is not recognised), they only need to submit their UK degree certificate to meet the English requirement.
If the applicant holds a degree issued by a university based outside the UK, they will need to provide certificates and transcripts, along with university letters to prove that the degree is taught in English, then apply to UK NARIC to confirm that the degree is equivalent to a UK degree or above .
If applicant does not have the above academic qualifications, they will need to meet the CEFR level A1 in speaking and listening.
After the initial visa is granted, the main applicant needs to establish a subsidiary or branch in the UK. The UK company must be 100% owned by the parent company outside the UK and engage in the same business as the parent company.
In order for the applicant to extend the visa after 3 years, the applicant needs to prove that the company headquarter and principal location of business are still outside the UK.
From our experience, some applicants will be required for interview. Most common reasons of the interview is due to the financial situation of the company, whether it is profitable or not. Did the applicant sell their shares before applying? The relationship between company shareholders, applicants and their spouses if they are both involved in the business? All the above factors are crucial for UK Home Office to consider the application. We also offer interview trainings to all our clients.
Interviews are conducted by phone or video call. Applicants need to familiarize themselves with the business plan and all the documentation being submitted. They will be expected to provide adequate and reasonable answers to prove that the applicants are genuine when answering questions.
The FAQs from UK Home Office generally range from 30 to 60 questions. Interview time is 1-2 hours. Applicants can choose to conduct the interview in English or Cantonese.
We can assist with your Sole Representative visa application and our service include: