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How to Relocate to the UK and Secure British Nationality

In this article we will answer the frequently asked questions regarding the process for Turkish migrants who would like to relocate to the UK as a Turkish Business person under ECAA 2 category.

1.Who can apply for Turkish Businessperson Visa and what are the requirements?

European Economic Community Association Agreement, mostly known as Ankara Agreement, is a visa category for Turkish nationals who are older than the age of 18.  To be able to obtain this visa, there are some criteria which Home Office takes into consideration during the assessment process. These are:

  • Intention to set up a business is the main factor. Applicants are expected to find the potential customers in the UK as an indication of their genuine future business;
  • Sufficient capital is required first of all to be able to cover personal living costs as well as the costs of setting up and operating the proposed UK business. Secondly the source of the money is extremely significant, as the money laundering rules are very strict in the UK. If the source of funds is not legitimate or explicable and supported by financial documents, the application is most likely to be refused;
  • English language skills are required to a sufficient level to operate the UK business. Whilst there are no strict criteria of the English language level for the application, the Home Office is likely to refuse an application where no evidence of English Language skills is provided with the application.
  • Lastly applicant must have the relevant experience or background related to their proposed UK business as the Home Office wants to ensure that the applicant is capable of running a successful business in the UK.

This Application can be made via UK Home Office or Visa Application Centres in other countries, however it should be noted that applications can take up to 6 months to be processed.

2.Can I also bring my family to the UK?

The dependents of the applicants can enter into UK to join and reside with the main applicant. Dependents can be children under the age of 21 or the married, unmarried partner of the applicant.

Initial ECAA 2 visa is granted for 12 months. Once the visa is granted, applicant can enter into the UK or continue to live in the UK, if switching from another visa category. It is a general requirements that Turkish Businessperson visa holders and their dependents should live in the UK for at least 6 months.

3. Do I have to set up a company and earn a certain amount of income to be able to expand my visa after 12 months of period?

Turkish business people have option to operate the business activities as a sole trader or under a limited company. Applicants should start to set up and run the business as soon as they have their National Insurance Number and the relevant rights to work in the UK. In the first year they are expected to make sufficient profit to maintain themselves and the dependents and pay the tax liabilities as required. The success of an extension application is based on whether the applicant was able to establish a credible business in the UK in the past 12 months and whether this has generated sufficient income to cover the applicant’s costs of living in the UK and operating the business.

4. How can I get 3 years extension?

The extension visa is normally granted for 3 years, where success of the business is clear and the company has been able to show healthy profits. Where the credibility of the business is yet to be proven, the applicant is likely to receive an extension for only 12 months, providing the Home office with a chance to check up on the progress of the applicant’s business again in a year’s time.

5. What is the recent change in Ankara agreement ILR application about?

After the completion of 4 years of successful self-employment in the UK applicants were able to apply to Indefinite Leave to Remain, however this has been extended to 5 years following the Aydogdu case heard in March 2018. This means that at present the successful applicants will need to make at least 3 applications from the point of relocating to the UK until securing Indefinite Leave to Remain in the UK. The applicants wishing to secure settlement in the UK as Turkish Business Persons are now also required to pass the relevant English Language and Life in the UK Test to be successful.

Once applicants are granted the settlement, they are free to take any type of employment in the UK and will no longer need to make any further applications to continue residing in the UK.

6.How Can I get British Passport?

Indefinite leave to remain holders can apply for naturalisation one year after the grant of settlement and become British Citizens. The requirements for citizenship are as follows:

  • The applicant must have passed English Language and Life in the UK test;
  • The applicant must be of good character and not have breached any immigration rules in the UK;
  • The applicant must have spent no more than 450 days outside the UK in the 5 years before the application;
  • The applicant must have not spent more than 90 days outside the UK in the 12 months before the application.


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Mann’s Solutions is international immigration law firm with offices in London, Hong Kong, Istanbul and St Petersburg and has expertise in offering UK Visas and Immigration by Investment services to high net worth individuals. Our immigration lawyers regulated by OISC (Office of the Immigration Services Commissioner).

For further information or to discuss your personal circumstances in a private consultation with our immigration lawyers in London Office, please contact us at enquiries@manns-solutions.com or call +44 207 993 63 46.