Overview of the Representative of an Overseas Business Visa
It’s essential to note that this visa route was introduced by the UK government in the summer of 2022 and was previously known as the ‘Representative of an Overseas Newspaper, News Agency, or Broadcasting Organization Visa.’
Additionally, individuals seeking to establish a UK branch of their overseas company or business as sole representatives can no longer apply for Sole Representative visas. Instead, they must apply through the UK Expansion Worker visa under the Global Business Mobility category of visas. However, workers with existing permission as sole representatives on UK Sole Representative visas can still extend their stay and settle in the UK through this route.
What Can I Do With a Representative of an Overseas Business Visa?
Holders of the Representative of an Overseas Business Visa can:
However, it’s important to note that they cannot:
Initially, the Representative of an Overseas Business Visa allows a stay of three years. After this period, individuals can apply to extend their visa for an additional two years, provided they continue to meet the visa’s conditions and eligibility criteria. Permanent settlement through indefinite leave to remain is possible after a total of five years in the UK.
What Are the Eligibility Criteria?
To apply for this visa, applicants must be employees of overseas newspapers, news agencies, or broadcasting organizations assigned to long-term work primarily based in the UK. Furthermore, the applicant’s employer must have its headquarters and principal place of business outside the UK.
Applicants must also:
While most applicants for this visa are typically journalists, other employees, including producers, news cameramen, and front-of-camera personnel, may also apply. However, secretaries and administrative support staff do not qualify under this visa and must consider alternative immigration routes.
What Is the Minimum English Language Requirement?
Applicants may be required to prove that they meet the minimum English language requirement when applying for a Representative of an Overseas Business Visa. This can be accomplished by either:
However, nationals of certain countries are exempt from proving their knowledge of English. These countries include Antigua and Barbuda, Dominica, St Lucia, Australia, Grenada, St Vincent and the Grenadines, The Bahamas, Guyana, Trinidad and Tobago, Barbados, Jamaica, USA, Belize, New Zealand, Canada, and St Kitts and Nevis.
How Do I Apply?
Applicants must apply for a Representative of an Overseas Business Visa online through the Gov.uk website. During the application process, applicants provide personal information and details related to their work and employment. It’s important to note that the earliest application can be made is three months before the intended travel date.
As part of the application process, applicants are required to attend a UK Visa and Citizenship Application Services (UKVCAS) service point to provide biometric information, including fingerprints and photographs.
Applicants will also need to submit various supporting documents. These documents can be uploaded online when submitting the application or scanned at the UKVCAS appointment. It’s crucial not to travel to the UK until a decision on the application has been received to avoid potential withdrawal.
What Documents Do I Need to Provide?
Applicants need to submit the following documents with their application:
Please note that this is not an exhaustive list, and additional documents may be requested based on individual circumstances. Any document not in English or Welsh must be accompanied by a certified translation.
What Are the Processing Times?
The standard processing time for a visa decision is typically within three weeks when applying from outside the UK. If applying from within the UK, the decision usually takes up to eight weeks.
However, processing times may vary if the UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) needs to contact the applicant for further information or verification of supporting documents. In certain circumstances, applicants may opt for a priority processing service for a faster decision, although this service may not be available in all countries.
How Much Does a Representative of an Overseas Business Visa Cost?
The cost of a Representative of an Overseas Business Visa is depends on situation when applying from outside the UK. If applying from within the UK, for example, when extending the visa or switching from another type of visa. The same fees apply when extending an existing visa.
Applicants are also required to pay the immigration healthcare surcharge as part of the application.
How Can I Extend My Visa?
To extend a Representative of an Overseas Business Visa, applicants must apply online through the Gov.uk website. If family members are present in the UK as dependants, they can also apply for an extension concurrently or before their current visas expire.
To qualify for an extension, applicants must:
If the applicant is a sole representative, they must also continue to oversee the UK branch or subsidiary established for the overseas business. Visa extensions can be granted for an additional two years after the initial period, with the possibility of a three-year extension if the original Representative of an Overseas Business visa was issued before October 1, 2009.
What Documents Do I Need to Provide When Extending My Visa?
When extending a visa as a sole representative, the following documents must be provided:
Newspaper, News Agency, or Broadcast Employees
When extending a visa as a newspaper, news agency, or broadcast employee, the following documents must be provided:
How Can I Bring My Family Members With Me to the UK?
Holders of a Representative of an Overseas Business Visa can bring their family members, including their spouse, partner, and children under 18, to the UK as dependants. However, if the visa holder is a sole representative, their spouse, partner, or family member cannot be in the UK as dependants if they own or control the majority of the overseas business being represented.
Family members must apply for their visas online through the Gov.uk website. They may also need to attend a UK Visa and Citizenship Application Services (UKVCAS) service point to provide biometric information.
Family members can apply to join or switch their visas to stay with the visa holder if they are already in the UK. This can be done either simultaneously with the visa holder’s application or before the expiration of their current visas.
How Can I Switch to This Visa?
Individuals already in the UK on another visa may have the option to switch to a Representative of an Overseas Business Visa. To be eligible for this switch, they must be employees of overseas media organizations on long-term assignments in the UK.
However, switching to this visa is not possible if the individual is currently in the UK on one of the following visa types:
Applicants who cannot switch from within the UK must leave the country and apply for a Representative of an Overseas Business Visa from outside the UK.
Furthermore, individuals planning to switch from a Student visa must meet specific conditions, such as the job start date being after the course completion date or having studied for a PhD for at least 24 months.
To switch to this visa, applicants must apply online through the Gov.uk website before their current visa expires.
It’s important to note that switching should occur before the current visa expires. Applicants typically receive a decision on their application within eight weeks when switching to a Representative of an Overseas Business Visa.
How Immigration Secure Can Assist You
Navigating the various visa categories and application procedures can be challenging. Immigration Secure offers expert guidance to help you choose the right Workers Visa category and ensure you meet all specific requirements for a successful application. Our services include comprehensive document checks, assistance with application forms, and the provision of a Letter of Representation to strengthen your case.
To initiate the process of obtaining your Temporary Worker Visa, please reach out to us or make an online enquiry. Our team of professionals is here to guide you through the entire application process.
REPRESENTATIVE OF AN OVERSEAS BUSINESS VISA
Frequently Asked Questions
The Representative of an Overseas Business Visa allows employees of overseas newspapers, news agencies, or broadcasting organizations to work in the UK for long-term assignments. This visa category was introduced in 2022.
Holders of this visa can work full-time in the UK for their employer, bring their family members (dependants), apply to extend their visa, apply for permanent settlement in the UK, and switch to this visa category from within the UK. However, they cannot work for themselves or claim public funds.
Applicants must be employees of overseas media organizations assigned to long-term work in the UK. The employer must have its headquarters and principal place of business outside the UK. Applicants must also demonstrate financial self-sufficiency and meet the English language requirement if applicable.
Applicants may need to prove their English language proficiency, typically by passing an approved English language test or holding an academic qualification taught in English. Some countries’ nationals are exempt from this requirement.
Applicants must apply online through the Gov.uk website. Biometric information, including fingerprints and photographs, must be provided at a UK Visa and Citizenship Application Services (UKVCAS) service point. It’s advisable to apply at least three months before the intended travel date.
Required documents include a valid passport, evidence of financial capability, proof of meeting the English language requirement (if applicable), confirmation of representing the employer, accommodation details, and tuberculosis test results (if required). Additional documents may be requested based on individual circumstances.
The standard processing time for a visa decision is typically three weeks when applying from outside the UK and up to eight weeks when applying from within the UK. Processing times may vary if further information is needed.
The visa fee depends on your situation when applying from outside the UK and when applying from within the UK. The immigration healthcare surcharge year of intended stay in the UK is also required.
To extend this visa, applicants must apply online and meet certain criteria, such as continuing to work for the same employer outside the UK. Sole representatives must oversee the UK branch or subsidiary of the overseas business. Extensions can be granted for up to two or three years.
Yes, visa holders can bring their family members (spouse, partner, and children under 18) as dependants. However, family members cannot be in the UK as dependants if they own or control the majority of the overseas business being represented.