Solicitors in Essex, Colchester, Chelmsford, London – Fisher Jones Greenwood
Services for business

Our commercial solicitors are able to offer legal advice over a wide range of corporate and commercial areas and issues. From our network of offices across Essex and London we are able to help organisations of all sizes and industries, making sure we always put the client first.

Business Immigration

Business Immigration

At Fisher Jones Greenwood we have a strong team of lawyers specialising in all aspects of business immigration law. The team works closely with the employment and commercial teams to ensure an expert service to our clients in all matters facing business clients.

Our expert team offers businesses, education providers and companies effective and client focused advice in all commercial immigration matters. The team is based in Colchester as well as on Fleet Street in Central London, but we can attend at your offices or business premises where appropriate.

The service we provide is based upon a thorough knowledge of the law and immigration procedures, enabling us to guide our clients through the immigration maze. We advise on all applications under Tier 1, including Entrepreneurs and Investors, highly skilled migrants, Tier 2, licensing issues facing businesses and education providers under Tier 4 and can assist with the application from initial advice to submitting the application. We also assist with appeals in the First Tier and Upper Tribunal, as well as challenges in the High Court where our clients have no right of appeal.

We enjoy a high level of success and have earned a reputation in providing high quality legal services for our clients.

Contact us today on 01206 835270 to speak with one of our business immigration law specialists.

Business Visitor Visa Information

The business visitor category is part of the Visitors Visa rules. However, it is for people who specifically want to come to the UK to do business for a short time. The category includes academic visitors, visiting professors, overseas news media representatives and film crews on location. The activities that you can undertake whilst in the UK on a visitors visa are defined by the UK Border Agency and are always subject to change. These include attending meetings or conferences, arranging deals or signing trade agreements or contracts, site visits, tour groups, attending a one off conference etc.

In addition to meeting these rules, you will need to demonstrate that you meet the rules for a general visitor and that you can maintain and accommodate yourself without claiming any benefits and that you intend to leave the UK at the end of your stay.

This visitor visa category is ideal for those people who may wish to come to the UK initially to arrange their business affairs before applying under one of the other categories such as investors or entrepreneurs.

If you have any questions about obtaining a business visitor visa, please contact us on 01206 835270.

Tier 4 Sponsor License Applications

Points Based System Tier 4
As an education provider in order to be able to offer courses to foreign national students or employ non-European economic area academic staff you need to have a sponsor license.

We can assist you in the process of obtaining a sponsor license and also with challenging any Home Office decision regarding the rating of your establishment. We can offer compliance training and provide ongoing day to day support on Home Office compliance. The suspension or loss of a sponsor license for an education provider has devastating and far reaching consequences for both the business of that education provider and also for the students who may lose the right to remain in the UK and continue to study.

Consequently, it is very important that as an education provider you are fully aware of your duties to the Home Office in order of monitoring the attendance and absence of students. During any compliance visit, we find that the Home Office is particularly interested in the records education providers keep and whether or not the day to day running of their systems reflects what was put forward to the Home Office when obtaining a sponsor license. We offer advice in all of these areas.

In addition, those applying for a Sponsor License under Tier 4, will now need to show that they are subject to overview by appropriate bodies. This is known as educational oversight.

We can assist with advice on how you meet the requirements for applying for educational oversight and what will happen if you are a legacy sponsor.

Contact us today on 01206 835270 to find out more.

Employers Duties to Prevent Illegal Working

If you are an employer in the United Kingdom you have a duty to ensure that your staff can work legally. If you cannot prove that your employee has the right to work in the United Kingdom, you could be liable for a penalty up to £10,000 per illegal worker. Both criminal and civil penalties may be applied to employers if they are unable to demonstrate that their employees have the right to work in the UK.

The UK Border Agency is currently very active in raiding business premises to check that you as an employer have the right documents to prove your employees have the right to work in the UK. If you cannot provide the “statutory excuse” against the civil penalty fines of up to £10,000 per worker you will be liable for that fine in the same way as you are liable for a parking ticket. We can provide specific advice and training to employers and HR consultants on the documents required to provide the statutory defence.

If you have been issued with a notice of potential liability, we can help you to challenge that potential fine.

The UK Border Agency has a name and shame policy whereby its publishes quarterly reports on those employers who have been fined for illegal workers. If you need more information contact us on 01206 835270.

Points Based System Tier 1

If you are an entrepreneur who wishes to set up a business in the UK, you can apply to come to the UK with a £200,000 investment or with a £50,000 investment from either:

  • a registered venture capital firm who is regulated by the financial conduct authority
  • or an entrepreneurial seed fund as endorsed on the UK Trade and Investment website
  • or if you have funds that have been made available to you by a UK government department which has made funds available for the specific purpose of establishing or expanding a UK business.

You will need to be able to demonstrate that the funds are disposable in the UK and are held in a regulated financial institution. Additionally, you will need to meet the English language requirement and be able to prove that you can personally maintain yourself by having certain funds in your account.

Your family members can be brought as dependants and after the residence period of 5 years, you and your family members can apply to settle in the UK.

It is important though to note that after the initial period of grant of leave, in order to apply for an extension you will need to demonstrate that you have invested the money in the business in the UK, that you have registered as a director as a UK company at Companies House or registered as self employed with HMRC within 6 months of arriving in the UK and you must have created the equivalent of 2 full time jobs for people who are settled in the UK.

We can assist you with the application from the inception of your business plan to the submission of your application. We have a strong team of lawyers at FJG who can also advise on obtaining the lease for your business, the employment law aspect for employing workers, the requirements for actually setting up a business in the UK and any other advice you may need in relation to your family such as enrolling your children in schools.

Contact us today on 01206 835270 to get started.

Graduate Entrepreneurs

This immigration route is open to ensure that students with an MBA and other graduates who have been identified by Higher Education Institutions as having developed genuine and credible business ideas and entrepreneurial skills to extend their stay in the UK after graduation, to enable them to establish a business in the UK.

This is a category under the Points Based System, under Tier 1. We can advise on the specific requirements, procedure and the required documents and also help you prepare the application itself to give it the best chance of success.

Contact us today on 01206 835270 to get started.

Prospective Entrepreneurs

The UK Border Agency has introduced a category of visitor visas for people who are in discussions with venture capitalists or UK government departments to join, set up or take over and run a business in the UK.

As a prospective entrepreneur you will be entitled to come to the UK for a maximum period of 6 months so that you can attend appointments to secure funding in order that you can go on to meet the requirements for Entry Clearance as an entrepreneur. If you are granted a visa as a prospective entrepreneur, you will not be allowed to switch to the entrepreneur category from within the UK. However, this is a useful immigration category to apply under so that you can come to the UK and arrange your business affairs.

You will need to be able to demonstrate that one or more of the following organisations are supporting your application and are considering funding your proposed business:

  • One or more registered venture capitalist firms regulated by the financial conduct authority.
  • One or more UK entrepreneurial seed funding competitions which are listed as endorsed on the UK Trade and Investment website or one or more UK government departments.

The total amount of proposed funding must be at least £50,000. In addition to meeting these requirements, you must be able to demonstrate that you meet the requirements for a visitors visa (link to visitors visa advice page). You will only be allowed to remain for a maximum period of 6 months in any 12 months and then you will need to return to your own country to apply for an entrepreneur visa (link to entrepreneur visa advice).

We can assist you with the visa application and any associated documentation that you need to submit with the application. We can then also help you prepare the entrepreneur visa application. The requirements for this route are very specific, as are the documentary requirements. We can help guide you through the process.

Contact us today on 01206 835270 to get started.


Points Based System Tier 1

The Investor category allows investors to qualify to live in the UK. Depending on the amount of money you have available to you, this could also provide a fast track route to settlement (Indefinite Leave to Remain) in the UK.

If you have £1 million in money under your own control held in a regulated financial authority institution, you can apply under the investor category. Alternatively, if you have a personal net worth exceeding £2 million (taking in to account your liabilities) and have £1 million loaned to you, and under your control in a regulated financial authorities institution, you can apply to come to the UK under the investors category.

You will need to score points under Tier 1 of the Points Based System as an investor. You will not need to meet the maintenance requirements or the English language requirement. Additionally, there is no need for you to demonstrate that you will be working in your own business.

If you have invested £10 million, you can obtain Indefinite Leave to Remain after 2 years or if you have invested £5 million you can obtain Indefinite Leave to Remain after 3 years. For investments of £1 million, the requirement remains that you should be in the UK for 5 years before qualifying for Indefinite Leave to Remain.

We can assist you with the initial investor application, and can also assist in the extensions for further leave to remain.

These applications are attractive to people who wish to come to the UK with their families to settle in the UK after having invested in the UK economy.

Contact us today on 01206 835270 to get started.

UKBA Training

At Fisher Jones Greenwood we are able to offer in-house training to you as an employer to ensure that you are compliant with UK Border Agency regulations. This is applicable to both those employers who are Tier 2 licensed sponsor holder as well as educational establishments and other businesses.

As an employer you have a duty to ensure that your staff can work legally in the UK and that you have the documentary evidence to prove this right to work. This is known as a statutory defence. The UK Border Agency proscribes certain documentary checks that need to be undertaken and we are able to offer training either at your premises or our offices. Should you wish to enquire about training please contact Ashlee Campbell on 01206 83532.