Proposed reforms in British immigration law

The government published a document called «UK innovation Strategy” which announced quite thrilling news. Why it is so exciting? Because they accepted a refreshed strategy to make the UK a comfortable and inspiring place for talented people and promising businesses. The UK has a huge demand for leading researchers, innovators and entrepreneurs. The intention is to make the UK the place to progress their ideas and to establish and expand innovative firms. The UK purposes to achieve those aims by 2030.


The Government plans is to invite the world’s best innovators and make the UK a global hub through the Office for Talent and open up new and improved visa routes for innovators.


Enterprises currently lack skilled people with the appropriate experience, talents and knowledge. This will be done by working with surplus bureaucracy by taking the following steps:

  • UK intends to reform its migration system to open borders to top talent. The aim is to make the country the best place for world-leading innovators to realize their ideas.
  • The government is taking steps to stop surplus bureaucracy in order to give innovators back control to speed the process.
  • They aim to design an innovator-friendly flexible governing policy. Entrepreneurs should see the UK as the place to start and scale their business by adapting to the latest emerging technologies.


What exact changes should we expect?!


The Document introduced new High Potential Individual and Scale-up visa routes, and modernise the Innovator Visa to draw interest and engage high-skilled, globally mobile innovation talent.


The government announced comfort requirements for Innovator Visa to build a competitive offer. This will be done in following steps:

  • Clarifying and streamlining the business eligibility requirement. Candidates will need to prove that their business venture has a high potential to grow and add value to the UK and is innovative.
  • The UK government is exploring a fast-track process for applicants whose business ideas are especially exceptional to meet the best international offers. Applicants that have been accepted on to the Department for International Trade’s Global Entrepreneur Programme will be automatically eligible.
  • The requirements of having £50,000 in investment funds for applicants of an Innovator Visa will be removed given that the endorsing body is satisfied the applicant has sufficient funds to grow their business. Also, the restriction on doing work outside of the applicant’s primary business will be dropped.


The UK authority will introduce a new High Potential Individual route to make it as simple as possible for internationally mobile individuals who show great potential to come to the UK. The eligibility criteria for this route is that the applicants must be graduated from a top global university. The list of those universities has not been clarified yet. The good news is that a visa would not require the candidate to have a job offer and it will also allow the candidate to extend the visa and settle in the UK in some time.


A scale-up route will also assist UK scale-ups by supporting talented individuals. What is required for this route:

  • high skilled job offer from a qualifying scale-up
  • required salary level


Scale-ups will have an opportunity to apply through a fast-track verification process, so long as the company is able to demonstrate an annual average revenue or employment growth rate over a 3-year period greater than 20%, and a minimum of 10 employees at the start of the 3-year period. The program will enable qualified individuals to work, change jobs or employers. Holders of scale-up visas will be able to extend their permission and settle in the UK, providing they can meet specific requirements.

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