Investor visa (Tier 1)

Switch to this visa

You may be able to switch to a Tier 1 (Investor) visa.

You should apply before your current visa expires.

Who can apply

You can apply to switch to this visa if you meet the eligibility requirements and you’re already in the UK under one of the following categories:

  • Tier 1 (General)
  • Tier 1 (Entrepreneur)
  • Tier 1 (Post-study work)
  • any Tier 2 category

You must leave the UK and make your application from abroad if you’re in another category.

How long you can stay

You can stay a maximum of 3 years after switching to a Tier 1 (Investor) visa. You can also extend your visa if you’re eligible.

How to switch

Read the full guidance on the Tier 1 (Investor) visa before you apply.

You can apply online.

You’ll also have to pay the healthcare surcharge as part of your application. Check how much you’ll have to pay before you apply.

You can also use the super premium service.

Biometric information

Each person applying must also pay £19.20 to have their biometric information (fingerprints and a photo) taken. You’ll be told how to do this after you’ve applied.

You’ll get a biometric residence permit if your application to switch your visa is successful.

How long it takes

You should get your visa:

  • within 8 weeks if you apply online or by post
  • usually on the same day if you use the super premium service

You’ll be contacted if your application is complex and will take longer, for example because:

  • your supporting documents need to be verified
  • you need to attend an interview
  • of your personal circumstances, for example if you have a criminal conviction

Once you’ve applied you can stay in the UK until you’ve been given a decision, as long as you applied before your last visa expired.