|Visitor Visas – Business Visitor|
The visitor visa is the most popular single route for individuals coming to the UK for tourism, to visit family or for business or other special purpose visits.
Reasons why you may wish to visit the UK
General requirements for coming to the UK as a visitor
The exceptions to this general rule are for ‘academic visitors and ‘parents of children at school in the UK” who are entitled to stay in the UK for a maximum period of 12 months.
Categories of the “Visitor Visa”
The different categories of “Visitor Visa” are as follows:
If you wish to visit the UK on business e.g. attend interviews or conferences, conduct site visits, arrange deals or sign contracts or deliver international goods and/or passengers from abroad, you will need to apply as a business visitor.
Business visitors are now able be able to undertake up to 30 days of recreational, English language or academic study provided it is not the main purpose of their visit. Recreational study means holiday-type and leisure course such as horse-riding or pottery. Any other study, including English language, can only take place at an institution that holds a sponsor license under Tier 4 PBS or that is accredited by a Home Office-approved body.
Other categories of individuals who must also apply as a business visitor are:
It is advised that you seek legal advice if you are uncertain whether your purpose for coming to the UK is covered by a “business visitor” category.
From 01 October 2013 the permissible activities that a business visitor can undertake in the UK were increased. Firstly, to allow internal auditors from global corporations to undertake short internal audits as business visitors rather than using the Tier 2 Intra-Company Transfer route. Secondly, to expand the training a business visitor can receive to include corporate training that is for the purposes of the visitor's employment overseas, delivered by a UK company that is neither part of the person's employer's corporate group nor whose main activity is the provision of training.
1. You will need to demonstrate that you only intend to visit the UK for a short period – no more than 6 months.
2. You must demonstrate that you intend to visit the UK for a genuine business activity. (There are a wide range of activities permitted under this visa category and it is advised that you obtain advice from us at Law Firm Ltd. to ensure that your proposed activity falls under a ‘permissible activity’ as outlined by the UK Border Agency).
3. You must intend to leave the UK after the end of your visit and demonstrate that you can meet the cost of the return or onward journey.
4. You must show that you have sufficient funds to maintain and accommodate yourself (and any dependants) without working in the UK or receiving assistance from UK public funds. Alternatively you can show that your relatives or friends or the company will be financially supporting and/or accommodating you.
B. Activities not permitted on a business visitor visa
C. Documents required
If you wish to apply as a business visitor, you should ensure that you have the following documentation:
The maximum you can stay in the UK, on any one occasion is six months as a business visitor.
If however your visa was granted for a period less than six months, you may apply for an extension of your visa which takes you up to the maximum of six months.
NB. There is an exception if you are an ‘Academic Visitor’ as you are entitled to stay in the UK for a maximum of 12 months.
Please note that upon the expiry of your visa, you are required to leave the UK. If you stay beyond the expiry of your visa, you will remain illegally in the UK and you will be considered an “overstayer”. This may have an adverse impact on your immigration record and is likely to affect any future UK immigration applications. This could even result in you being banned from re-entering the UK for a certain period of time.
E. Right of Appeal
Applicants can be refused a visa to enter the UK as a business visitor and would normally receive a detailed letter explaining the reasons for refusal.
There is no right of appeal against the Entry Clearance Officers decision to refuse any visitor visa application. We therefore advise that if applicants have been refused a business visitor visa, please seek legal advice on the procedure for submitting a fresh application.
In case of visitor visa refusal, the only judicial remedy is Judicial Review. This is where a Judge reviews the lawfulness of a decision or action made by the British Embassy/Home Office in the High Court. If you wish to explore this option further then please contact us to arrange a consultation.
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