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UK Set to Crack Down Money Laundering Via Tier 1 Visa

in UK Immigration by

UK Set to Crack Down Money Laundering Via Tier 1 Visa The Home office has made announcements regarding the reform of golden visa schemes which aims at controlling dirty money coming into the UK at the wake of Skripal attack.

Under the Tier-1 (Investor) scheme reforms, applicants are expected to show evidence of being in control of £2m which they need to have for 2 years, instead of 90 days, or proof of the source of such funds.

The golden visa has in the past been one of the most popular routes which have attracted a lot of wealthy Russian and Chinese investors, who are now resettled in the UK. However, in the fight against money-laundering, the UK has been reviewing the scheme, especially as its relations with Russia deteriorate due to the death, by poisoning, of Sergi Skripal, a Russian agent in Salisbury last year.

Earlier this year, the owner of Chelsea football club and a Russian oligarch, Roman Abramovich withdrew the application of his golden visa as a result of this sour relation between the two countries. Abromovich was also deprived of a residency visa in Switzerland due to Police warning to officials, describing him as a “threat to public security” and risk to the reputation of the country.

As a result, Russians with Tier-1 visas decreased from 40 to 29 in 2017 and 2018 respectively. That was the least number ever witnessed since the introduction of the visa in 2008.

Reformation

From March 29, 2019, the reformed scheme will be put into operation. Also, two new visas – the Innovator route and Startup visa has been announced by the Home Office to be operational from March, 29.

The startup visa, which is to replace the Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur) route, is for those who wish to venture into business for the first time in the UK. Any individual, not just graduates, is eligible for this visa and the visa doubles up its time from a year to 2 years. This is to provide sufficient time for the growth of the business before a further application is made.

While the startup visa is for business beginners, the innovator route is for more cognizant business people, with £50,000 – instead of the previously stated £200,000 – to invest in their business.

The Immigration Minister, Caroline Nokes said that her priority was to make sure that the UK is still viewed as an attractive business destination for talented business people.

Partner at Charles Russell Speechyls and specialist in business immigration, Rose Carey, said that the changes made will be welcomed by the investors. She added that the change to be felt as a result of the replacement of the Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa scheme with the new innovator and startup visa will be positive. This is because independent endorsement and assessment will be done by experts and from other categories of visas like Tier 1 Exceptional Talent visa, which has worked well.

“With the upcoming Brexit and its threats to the country’s economy, investment from outside the European Union is a welcomed activity and should be encouraged. Also, the demonstration of UK’s willingness and openness to businesses will be an appreciative message,” said Rose Carey.

To get your possible Immigration options, approach Immigration News now, and we will also evaluate your profile with our Immigration experts and advise you whether you are qualified to apply or not.

MPs Condemn the Use of Android-only App in Getting Settled UK Status

in UK Immigration by

MPs Condemn the Use of Android-only App in Getting Settled UK StatusUK Home Office has been accused of digital discrimination for the creation of Android-only app for settled UK status application for EU nationals.

Sajid Javid, the home secretary, received an open letter – from top Labour MPs and MEPs – stating that the Android-only app system does not represent the fair treatment of all EU nationals.

Need for Trust

The MPs stated that the settled scheme for EU nationals must not be allowed to be bedeviled by public distrust because the public unprecedentedly observes the administrative obstacles and difficulties facing UK’s immigration system since the Windrush scandal. Unfortunately, the Android-only app system does not give the public, including EU nationals, the much-needed confidence, they said.

Beginning from January 21, EU nationals living in the UK started the application for settled status with the aid of the Android-only app designed by the Home Office. All EU nationals in the UK are required to confirm their identity using the app after which they are to visit the government website for the final part – provision of evidence that they have been in the country continuously for at least five years.

Individuals who do not have capable phones are required to visit any of the 13 centers in the UK for their verification. This has led to criticism from many of the group who have to embark on long journeys to get to the closest center.

The number of centers is expected to increase to 50 by March 30, a day after UK leaves the EU. The current system is only a test, and it is entirely voluntary, said the Home Office.

The MPs do not agree with the Home Office on this stating that the system is causing distress and promise of more centers in the future cannot give anybody certainty or confidence. What stopped it from being right from the start? They asked.

To get your possible Immigration options, approach Immigration News now, and we will also evaluate your profile with our Immigration experts and advise you whether you are qualified to apply or not.

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