There are many requirements and restrictions in visiting the UK for business-related activities.

Woodcock Law can help you apply for a Standard Visitor Visa and ensure that you meet the strict requirements.

Your need for a visa depends on your nationality and specific circumstances, so it is best to check here if you need a visa.

A Standard Visitor Visa covers tourism, family visits, business, medical reasons or a short course of study.

You must always show evidence that you plan to leave the UK after your visit and that you have sufficient funds to support yourself for the duration of your trip. There is also a requirement for proof from a third party declaring that there is a genuine professional or personal relationship and offering potential support if required.

Business Visitors

Business visitors can come to the UK on a short-term basis for business-related reasons or activities without formally taking part in the UK labour market or being employed in the UK.

There are restrictions in permitted activities under a Standard Visitor Visa. The applicant must not intend to work in the UK, which includes the following:

  • taking employment in the UK;
  • doing work for an organisation or business in the UK;
  • establishing or running a business as a self-employed person;
  • doing a work placement or internship;
  • direct selling to the public;
  • providing goods and services, unless expressly allowed;
  • where the applicant is already paid and employed outside of the UK, they must remain so.

What you can do

  • You can come to the UK for a conference, meeting or training
  • You can take part in a specific sports-related event.
  • You can come to the UK to perform if you are an artist, entertainer or musician.
  • You can come to the UK if you are an academic and are doing research, or accompanying students on a study abroad programme
  • You can come to the UK to take a clinical attachment or observer post if you are doctor or dentist
  • You can take the Professional and Linguistic Assessment Board (PLAB) test or sit the Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE)
  • You can come to the UK if you want to get funding to start, take over, join or run a business in the UK.

What you cannot do

  • Payment may only be allowed in specific circumstances
  • You cannot live in the UK for long periods of time through frequent visits
  • You cannot get public funds
  • You cannot marry or register a civil partnership, or give notice of marriage or civil partnership.

Long-term Standard Visitor Visa

You can apply for a long-term Standard Visitor Visa if you need to visit the UK regularly over a longer period. This visa lasts 2, 5 or 10 years, with a 6 month limit on each visit.

If you apply for this visa, you need to provide evidence that you will always leave the UK at the end of each visit. You may be banned from visiting if it is shown that you are living in the UK for extended periods under this visa.

Permitted Paid Engagement Visa

Another option is to apply for a Permitted Paid Engagement Visa if you are invited by a UK-based organisation to do specific work as an expert in your profession without being sponsored on a Tier 2 Visa.

You can be invited by a UK-based organisation or client to:

  • be a student examiner or assessor
  • take part in selection panels as a highly qualified academic if you are invited by an education, arts or research organisation
  • give lectures at a higher education institution, if it’s not a part-time or full-time role
  • examine UK-based pilots so they meet the standards of the country you come from if you are invited by an approved UK training organisation regulated by the UK Civil Aviation Authority
  • provide advocacy in a particular area of law
  • take part in arts, entertainment or sporting activities including broadcasting
  • take part in fashion modelling assignments.

CONDITIONS OF VISA

You can do minor activities related to your work or business overseas, such as attend meetings.

You cannot do specific paid work unrelated to your main job or area of expertise or use this visa to live in the UK for extended periods. You cannot study for more than 30 days. You also cannot bring dependants, get public funds, or marry or register a civil partnership, or give notice of marriage or civil partnership.

FAQs

Standard Visitor Visa

You must apply online before you travel to the UK. As part of your online application, you need to book an appointment at a visa application centre. You will have your biometrics (fingerprints and photograph) taken at your appointment.

Once you’ve applied online, proved your identity and provided your documents, you’ll usually get a decision on your visa within 3 weeks.

Once you have applied online, proved your identity and provided your documents, you will usually get a decision on your visa within 3 weeks.

You may be able to extend your stay as long as the total time you spend in the UK as a visitor is no more than 6 months.
There are also special circumstances where you may be able to extend your visa past 6 months, for example if you are receiving private medical treatment in the UK or are an academic.

You can apply for a Transit Visa. Apply for a Direct Airside Transit visa (DATV) if you will be changing flights in the UK and will not be going through UK border control.
Apply for a Direct Airside Transit visa (DATV) if you will be changing flights in the UK and will not be going through UK border control.
You will need to apply for a Standard Visitor Visa if you need to stay longer in the UK, or you can prove you need to frequently pass through the UK over a longer period.

CONTACT US FOR OUR
EXPERT ADVICE

There are many requirements to be met to satisfy UK Visas and Immigration. The Immigration Rules contain strict requirements in terms of the evidentiary documents that must be provided.

Woodcock Law is well placed and highly experienced in providing bespoke advice and assistance with Standard Visitor Visa applications for business visitors.

We recommend getting in contact with us on 020 7712 1590 for our expert advice on such an application before any action is taken.

The information contained on this page is sourced from UK Visas and Immigration and is subject to change. While Woodcock Law Limited makes every effort to keep this information current, prices and information cannot be guaranteed and should always be checked on www.gov.uk.