The Sole Representative Visa –

The Sole Representative Visa – ideal immigration route to the UK

Currently, one of the most popular immigration routes among South Africans wanting to establish a business presence in the UK is the Sole Representative Visa. This immigration route allows the overseas company to send one key individual to the UK to establish a wholly owned subsidiary or UK branch for the overseas company.

The Sole Representative Visa –

Following a number of queries on the visa, we have compiled some of the most FAQ on the topic.

Why is this immigration route so popular for entrepreneurs?

The answer can probably be found in the fact there is no need for the involvement of a UK employer or large investment sums to qualify for this immigration route.

Who will qualify as a Sole Representative of the overseas company?

The sole representative or applicant must have been recruited as an employee outside the United Kingdom by a firm whose headquarters and principal place of business is outside the UK. The firm must not have another branch, subsidiary or representative in the UK.

The employee must be a senior employee, and intend to be employed full time, with full authority to take operational decisions on behalf of the overseas firm. The applicant’s presence in the UK must be to establish and operate a registered branch or wholly owned subsidiary of the overseas firm. The applicant will also be required to have extensive related industry knowledge and experience.

The applicant may be a shareholder in the overseas firm, but may not be a majority shareholder.

Will my family be able to join me in the UK on this visa?

Yes. The spouse, civil partner, unmarried partner and dependant children may apply to join the Sole Representative in the UK. The dependants will be granted the same period of leave as the Sole Representative and may work without restriction in the UK.

Does the Visa lead to Indefinite Leave to Remain?

Yes. The Sole Representative Visa is granted for an initial period of three years which then may be extended for an additional period of two years. At the end of successful completion of a five-year period on this type of visa, the holder can, subject to certain requirements, qualify to apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain.

If you are a business looking to expand your business to the UK, please do not hesitate to contact us for advice. or