The Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur Visa is for recent international graduates. You will need to hold a qualification equivalent to a UK Bachelor’s degree or higher. It allows graduates to enter or remain in the UK to set up a business following their graduation.

The Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur Visa will allow you to stay in the UK for up to 12 months to get your business started. If your business has been successful at this time, you may be able to apply to extend your visa for a further year. You may also have the chance to switch onto the Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa for a further three years.

How can IAS help?

The experts at IAS will be able to advise you on being sponsored by the correct governing body. This will be either the Department for International Trade (DIT) or a Higher Education Institution. Your lawyer will also help you prepare for your Home Office interview, as well as advising you on all the necessary documents and evidence. With our help, you will be in the best position to get a positive result for your Graduate Entrepreneur Visa application. This is a very complex application with a high refusal rate. Seeking the advice of an immigration expert is highly advised. If you would like to know more about your options, complete our online inquiry form or call us now on +1844 290 6312.


Can I apply for a Graduate Entrepreneur Visa?

To apply for a Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur Visa, you will need to be from outside of the EEA (European Economic Area). You will also need to be a UK graduate endorsed by your university or an international graduate endorsed by the DIT.

You must have evidence you can support yourself financially: £945 for those within the UK, £1,890 if applying from outside.

Is there a difference between the Graduate Entrepreneur Visa and an Entrepreneur Visa?

The Graduate Entrepreneur route is for endorsed recent graduates, most often from UK universities. Those applying for a Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa will still have to give evidence of their academic ability. This route will also, however, need proof of how your previous employment qualifies you to be a business owner.

The Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur Visa is only valid for a year while the initial Entrepreneur Visa is valid for three years and four months.

With the Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa, applicants must have access to £200,000 to start their company. For the Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur Visa, applicants only need to prove they have £50,000.

How do I apply for a Graduate Entrepreneur Visa?

To apply for the Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur Visa, you will need to be endorsed. This is either by the UK institution you received your degree from or by the DIT as an international entrepreneur. This is part of the elite global graduate entrepreneur program (Sirius).

Most universities are able to endorse this visa type but the yearly limit is currently set at 2000.

To be endorsed you will need to submit a comprehensive business plan and deliver a presentation to your chosen institution. Your business idea and presentation must be deemed genuine and viable to get an endorsement.

Once you have received your endorsement, you will be able to make your application. This can be done online from outside the UK or through the post from within.

Can I bring my spouse/children with me on a Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur Visa?

Some family members from outside the EEA can apply as dependents to your Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur Visa. These family members are restricted to children under the age of 18 and your spouse/partner.

Your dependents will have to pay a separate Home Office fee as well as the NHS surcharge to be considered. How much maintenance you need to give evidence for will also increase with each dependent.

What is the UK Startup Visa?

The Home Office has announced the introduction of a new ‘Startup Visa’ route for 2019. This is intended to replace the current Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur Visa route. The main difference stated is that applicants will no longer have to have a university education. Applicants will still need to be endorsed but there is also believed to be more governing bodies who can provide an endorsement.

Read more about the UK Startup Visa.

What services does IAS offer?

When applying for the Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur Visa, be aware that this is a difficult application with a 2000 per year limit and a high refusal rate.

The experts at IAS will be able to put you in touch with a specialist business consultant to help you with your business plan. Your lawyer will also help you prepare for your presentation and interview. Using IAS will ensure that your application is in the best possible position for success.

Our services include:

  • Advising you on applying for endorsement;
  • Assessing your business plan and advice on how best to prepare for your presentation;
  • Checking all documents and organizing them into an evidence portfolio;
  • Completing all your application forms in full;
  • Maintaining contact with the Home Office until a decision is made.

We can also advise you on extending your Entrepreneur Visa when yours is set to expire.

Call IAS on +1844 290 6312 to find out more or start your application.

Our Graduate Entrepreneur Packages

Advice Package

Comprehensive immigration advice tailored to you, with written confirmation


Application Package

Full assistance throughout your entire application process


Fast Track Package

A premium service which allows your application to take priority position in your lawyer's workload


Appeal Package

Full representation through your appeal, including physical representation if your case is heard by a tribunal


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