I am a US citizen wanting to move to the UK. I currently have my own business and make plenty of money to support myself in the UK. Can I get a visa as a self employed individual, or must I obtain a Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa proving I have at least 50,000 pounds in my bank account, or just go for a sponsored visa? I'm 34 years old so I don't qualify as a "youth". Thank you for your help!

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    expatriates.stackexchange.com/questions/1207/… however, I don't think any of these apply to you. I'm not an expert (hence not enough for an answer) but the UK is one of the toughest countries to get into. Without a sponsor, this is not going to be a very feasible thing. Sep 19, 2016 at 5:38
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    If you want to start a business in the UK and have free access to £50,000 poinds of your own money, then apply for a Tier 1 visa. If you can find and get a job from a company willing to sponsor you, then do that. It's really up to you which way you want to go. Why do you want to move to the UK?
    – ouflak
    Sep 19, 2016 at 7:04

1 Answer 1


The Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa is for individuals that want to set up or run a business in the UK. It is the appropriate visa for a self-employeed individual. This requires you to have £50,000. Ideally this comes from approved sources in the UK, but the short guidance says

You can also apply if you’ve already invested £50,000 in a UK business. You must have invested the funds less than 12 months before you apply.

This clause, however, appears absent in the full guidance. If the money is simply in your bank account, you may in fact need £200,000.

A Tier 2 General is a sponsored visa, but requires you to have a job offer from an employer willing, and allowed, to sponsor you.

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