Tier 1 (Entrepreneur)
Applying to Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) from inside the UK
This page explains how you should apply for permission to remain in the UK under Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) of the points-based system, if you are currently:
- in the UK under Tier 1 (Entrepreneur), and you want to extend your stay in the same category; or
- in the UK under a different immigration category, and you want to 'switch' into Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) - see 'More information' below to find out whether you can switch from your current immigration category.
Before you apply, you should read the Can you apply? pages and use our points calculator to find out whether you will score enough points for a successful application.
If you think you are eligible to apply, you can download the application form and policy guidance from the right side of this page. You must read the policy guidance before you make your application.
You should only complete the sections of the application form that are relevant to you. The application form contains help text which explains how to complete each section.
You should send the application form by post or by courier to the address on the cover on the form. Your application must arrive during normal business hours (08:30 to 16:30 Monday to Friday, excluding public holidays), or we cannot guarantee that we will receive it.
There are special application requirements if you are currently in the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man - see 'More information' below.
When should you apply?
You should apply as soon as possible, and before your current permission to stay expires. We encourage you to apply 1 month before your permission expires.
The date of your application depends on whether you apply by post or by courier. For details, see 'More information' below.
Biometric residence permit
As part of your application, you will need to enrol your fingerprints and facial image (known as 'biometric information') in order to obtain a biometric residence permit. The Biometric information page explains how to do this.
Can you switch into Tier 1 (Entrepreneur)?
If you already have permission to stay in the UK under any of the following categories, you can apply to Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) from inside the UK:
- Tier 1 (General);
- Tier 1 (Investor);
- Tier 1 (Post-study work);
- Tier 1 (Graduate entrepreneur);
- business person;
- Highly Skilled Migrant Programme;
- student nurse;
- student re-sitting an examination;
- student writing up a thesis;
- work permit holder;
- postgraduate doctor or dentist;
- self-employed lawyer;
- writer, composer or artist;
- International Graduates Scheme (or its predecessor, the Science & Engineering Graduate Scheme);
- Fresh Talent: Working in Scotland Scheme;
- Tier 2;
- Tier 4; or
- prospective entrepreneur.
The following categories can only apply if you have access to at least £50,000:
- Tier 4;
- student nurse;
- student writing up a thesis;
- student re-sitting an examination; or
- postgraduate doctor or dentist.
Please see the Requirements for students page for further information.
If you are in a different immigration category, you will need to leave the UK and make your Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) application from outside the UK.
What is the date of your application? (Applying by post or courier from inside the UK)
If you send your application form and application fee by post, the date of application is the date of posting. This is decided by the postmark. If the postmark is illegible or missing, the date of postage is taken as being at least 1 day before it is received by us.
If you send your application form and application fee by courier, the date of application is the date when it is delivered to our payment handling service.
- Withdrawing your application When the payment handling service has received your application, the application fee is charged. The fee cannot then be refunded if you withdraw your application.
- Duplicate applications If you send more than one application, you will be charged the application fee for each application.
How to pay your application fee if you are inside the UK
You can choose how to pay your application fee:
- By cheque in sterling on a UK bank account. The application form will tell you who to make the cheque payable to. You should write your full name and date of birth on the back, and attach the cheque to the front of the completed application form.
- With a UK postal order. You should write your full name and date of birth on the back, and attach the postal order to the front of the completed application form.
- With a credit or debit card - American Express, MasterCard, Visa (including Electron), Delta and Maestro (including Solo). We can accept only Maestro cards issued in the UK. You must include the card number, the amount paid, the payer's name as it appears on the card, the 'valid from' and expiry dates, the card verification value (CVV) code, the cardholder's signature and the date. The issue number is also needed for Maestro cards.
Payment by any other method is not accepted.
You must send the full amount to cover the total cost of your application. If you do not do this, your application will be invalid and will not be considered. We will return your application and part payment to you.
We start considering the application when the payment has cleared. Payments are cleared:
- after 5 working days for cheques
- after 1 working day for credit or debit cards
- immediately for postal orders
Please note that, if you are making numerous payments using your credit card, the anti-fraud measures that banks operate sometimes stop the payment being taken. This may be because you have exceeded the maximum limit on a single transaction, or the number of transactions allowed in a given period of time. You must contact your bank in advance, so that the bank will allow the full payment to be taken without any such problems when you submit your applications.
Payment information on the application form
It is very important that you complete the payment section of the application form correctly. If this section contains errors, we will not be able to process your payment. This will mean that your application is invalid.
Applying from the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man
The Channel Islands (Jersey, Guernsey, Herm, Sark and Alderney) and the Isle of Man have their own immigration laws and policies. For immigration control, we consider that these islands are outside the UK.
If you are living in the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man, and the island authorities have given you permission to enter or stay there (also known as 'entry clearance' or 'leave to remain'), you cannot apply directly from the island for permission to enter the UK.
To apply for permission to enter the UK, you have 2 options:
- you can return to the country where you are normally resident (your 'home country') and apply from there for a visa to enter the UK; or
- if your permission to stay on the island is still current, and if UK immigration law allows you to 'switch' from your current immigration category on the island into this category, you can travel to the UK and apply from here. We will treat your current permission to stay as if it had been given by the UK authorities. You must apply to switch before your current permission to stay on the island expires.
You may need to apply for a visa before you come to the UK from the islands. For more information, see section 2 of our Immigration directorate instructions, Chapter 1.
Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) - for applications made inside the UK
- Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) application form PDF 716KB opens in a new window
- Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) policy guidance PDF 685KB opens in a new window