There is nothing sure about Brexit, except that it will change all legislation related to immigration. The United Kingdom is leaving the European Union, and its citizens want to minimise the number of immigrants to a few tens of thousands per year. The official date for the UK to leave the European Union is March 2019. There can be a transition period of maximum two years, and during this time frame, the British immigration laws will change.
Until now, the UK was a welcoming country, and without any doubts, it will be the same, at least for wealthy immigrants.
The UK's famous Tier1 residency by investment program started among concerns, but it became popular during the last five years. There are two relevant visa categories for the HNWI (High Net Worth Individual) applicants:
- UK Tier 1 Investor, and
- UK Tier 1 Entrepreneur
According to the statistics of the Home Office, primary applicants obtained 3,428 Tier 1 Investor visas from 2008 to Q1 period of 2017. Approximately 6000 dependents gained the right with the main applicant to settle in the United Kingdom. (https://corpocrat.com/2017/06/16/uk-tier1-investor-and-entrepreneur-visa-statistics/). The candidates applying through the Tier 1 Investor route had to invest at least two million pounds in the country, and this amount made the English residency by investment program the most expensive product of the HNWI immigration market until Australia introduced its Premium Investor visa, which has even higher requisites.
The UK Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa is a more affordable solution; the applicants must invest an amount between 50,000 and 200,000 GBP. The qualifying amount of investment depends on the type of business activity in the country. Naturally, more candidates have chosen this solution, between 2008 and Q1 2017, more than 5670 HNWI immigrants received their resident permits through this scheme.
Same-sex sexual activity was decriminalised between 1967 and 1982 in the UK. Transgender citizens may change their legal gender since 2005. The right to enter into a civil partnership and adopt children in England and Wales was granted in the same year. Same-sex marriage was legalised in the UK (except Northern Ireland, where only the civil partnership is available for the LGBT people) in 2014. The British islands guarantee one of the highest degrees of freedom for the LGBTQ community. According to recent polls, the majority of citizens support same-sex marriage. It is interesting that there are 45 LGBTI MPs in the parliament.
The process takes three months, then the citizenship of the United Kingdom can be obtained after six years of resident status and living in the country. After the Brexit, the Tier1 Entrepreneur visa will be the cheapest solution to settle in the UK for third country nationals (TCNs), and as it looks like, this will be the solution for the affluent citizens of the European Union as well. However, the negotiations between the British government and the EU haven't solved the future legal frame of the new UK immigration system. But, the Tier 1 program works now, and if you are thinking of moving to the UK, it is the best time to start the immigration process, before the related legislation changes.
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