UK immigration program
The United Kingdom is a highly developed industrial state, the economy of which today ranks 8th in the world. Britain became an official member of the European Union in 1973, but refused to sign the Schengen Agreement, retaining its currency - the British pound sterling (GBP). The state is also a member of such international organizations as the UN, OSCE and NATO.
The country is one of the richest on the planet, and its capital - London - is the largest financial, economic and cultural center, where the headquarters of international corporations and world-class banks are located. It is a unitary state with a parliamentary monarchy and a transparent system of law that underlies the legal systems of most countries in the British Commonwealth of Nations and the United States. All of the above explains the continuing interest of foreigners in the United Kingdom as a place to do business and permanent residence..
In 2008, the UK introduced a new visa system, which includes the Tier 1 Investor visa. The program provides an opportunity for individual investors and their families to obtain UK citizenship through investments in the public economy in the amount of at least £ 2 million.
The main condition for obtaining a Tier 1 Investor visa is a significant contribution to the country's economy. The applicant's bank account must have at least GBP 2 million for at least 3 months prior to the application. The investment cannot be used as collateral for a loan.
Within 3 months from the date of entry into the territory of the United Kingdom, the candidate must invest in the development of the above amount in one of the ways specified in the immigration rules. It is important to note that the investment cannot be withdrawn until the permanent residence permit has been obtained.
The applicant is required to invest in UK government bonds at least GBP 2 million for a period of 5 years.
There are no special qualification requirements for the applicant. The initial visa, which is valid for 3 years and 4 months, can be obtained with no business experience and no knowledge of English. The applicant's family - spouse and children under 18 - are granted rights to enter, reside, work and study in the United Kingdom. The applicant's children are educated on the same rights as British citizens. Education in state educational institutions is free, in private ones it is necessary to pay for studies as foreign students before obtaining permanent residence. An applicant's parents are not eligible for participation in the Tier 1 program, even if they are completely dependent on the applicant.
The main applicant is required to spend at least 183 days a year in the UK. Dependent family members on the application are not subject to this requirement.
However, from July 9, 2017, a new condition is in effect: now the main applicant and his spouse (s), who are in an official or civil marriage, are required to continuously reside in the territory of the state for the duration of the visa. They do not have the right to leave the country for a period of more than 180 days a year for 5 years, before obtaining permanent residence.
The applicant and his family members submit immigration documents in their country of residence. Only applicants who are already in the UK and wish to change from one visa category to another (for example, from student to investor) can do so in the UK (except for a tourist visa).
Procedure and terms of consideration
The application is reviewed by a member of the UK Border and Immigration Agency and the process can take 1-6 weeks. Upon arrival in the country, residents of some states will have to register with the police.
After living in the UK for 3 years, the candidate must apply for a visa extension. Subject to the conditions established, the residence permit in the country is extended for 2 years.
After 5 years of residence in the United Kingdom, you can apply for permanent residence (indefinite British visa - ILR) for the whole family.
By investing GBP 5 million in the country's economy, you can get permanent residence after 3 years, and GBP 10 million - after 2. At the same time, permanent residence will be granted to all family members if the applicant continues to comply with the conditions for staying in the UK and maintaining investments.
Both the applicant and dependent family members must successfully pass the English Language Proficiency and British Lifestyle tests (ESOL B1 and Life in the UK respectively).
Citizenship of Great Britain
An applicant can only apply for British citizenship by living in its territory for at least 5 years, and in the last year he must have ILR - the right to permanent residence in the country. Each family member who also wishes to obtain citizenship must fulfill the residence requirement: not spend more than 450 days outside the UK in the last 5 years and not spend more than 90 days outside the UK in the last year before applying. The UK recognizes dual citizenship.
The main taxes for individuals in the UK are taxes on income, capital gains and inheritance. There is no property tax here. Since April 2013, income tax has been levied on a progressive scale - up to 45% on income over GBP 150,000 per year.
The capital gains tax rate for individuals varies from 18% to 28%, while the effective tax rate on income from the sale of certain types of assets can be reduced to 10%. This mainly applies to private entrepreneurs and companies whose shares are not traded on the stock exchange. A 10% rate applies to profits up to GBP 10 million for persons who have received income from the sale of such assets or business if they have been held for at least 1 year prior to the date of sale.
Inheritance and gift tax is levied on the property and/or money of the deceased. The tax does not apply to estates in the amount of GBP 325,000, and all property above this threshold is taxed at a rate of 40%. For spouses who inherit property from their partner, preferential conditions apply.
The United Kingdom has signed double tax treaties with most of the world's countries.
Benefits of participating in the UK immigration program:
- The capital of the country is a world financial, economic and cultural center.
- Loyal taxation system for resident investors who do not live in the UK permanently.
- Developed foreign economic relations.
- Quality education system.
- Visa-free entry to most countries of the world.
- The shortest time for obtaining a residence permit and citizenship among the G8 countries.
- Opportunity to work and engage in internal and external business activities without business experience (upon obtaining citizenship).