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Representative of an Overseas Business Visa Extension

Employers and businesses with representatives overseas in the UK may, in some instances, require an extension on their overseas business visa. Those applying for this will have already met the primary criteria by entering the UK with valid clearance. However, representatives need to ask how they can ensure they are ready in the event an extension is needed.

This is where IAS lawyers can come in and help. At IAS, our legal team are experts in assisting any overseas company that already has entry clearance to stay in the UK to extend their stay before their current visa expires. If you need an overseas business visa extension, contact us today at +44 (0)333 305 9375, reach out to us online or send an email.

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    Is It Possible To Extend A Representative Of An Overseas Business Visa?

    After a sole representative of an overseas business has been in the UK for five continuous years on a Representative of an Overseas Business visa, it is possible for an ILR (Indefinite Leave to Remain).

    However, the initial period of the visa is three years. For this visa to be extended, the applicant needs to meet the eligibility criteria for it to be renewed. Immigration rules about Sole Representatives on this visa will need to meet particular criteria for an extension. These criteria are as follows:

    • The applicant must have a valid Representative of an Overseas Business visa. This can be as a representative of an overseas business or as an employee of an overseas news agency, newspaper, or broadcasting organisation.

    As well as this, they must also fit the following criteria:

    • The applicant must have registered and established a branch/subsidiary of their employer.
    • The applicant must still be in the process of supervising the subsidiary or branch in the UK that they established for their employer.
    • The applicant must continue to be working for the same employer as when the initial visa was granted, and this employer must still be primarily based overseas.
    • The applicant must still be needed by the employer to stay in the role of a sole representative on behalf of the organisation.

    Additionally, some criteria need to continue to be met in the original controlling stake requirements for the visa. This means that when you apply for a visa extension, the applicant still meets the following eligibility criteria:

    • The applicant does not own any more than 50% of the shares in the overseas business that they are representing.
    • The applicant does not have control of more than 50% of the voting rights of the business they represent.
    • The applicant is not a self-employed owner of the business represented.
    • The applicant is not a sole proprietor of the business they represent.
    • The applicant is not in a partnership agreement in which they own more than 50% of the business represented.

    Speak to our immigration team today for expert guidance regarding the renewal process of this visa.

    Documents Required For A Sole Representative Visa Renewal Application

    When a business representative submits for a Sole Representative Visa extension, the Home Office requests a series of documents to support the reasoning for the extension. Documents will vary depending on your circumstances and can include the following:

    • A letter from the employer overseas to confirm that they wish for the applicant to continue employment in the role of sole representative in the United Kingdom.
    • Details of the assigned remuneration package (the pay) from the overseas employer.
    • Pay slips and bank statements that show the employee has received their salary from their employer over the last 12 months immediately before the application for extension.
    • Evidence that shows the employee has generated a business in the United Kingdom on behalf of the employer since being granted the Sole Representative visa. This can include copies of invoices, letters from firms with which the branch in the UK has done business, financial accounts, and so on.
    • A letter from the company’s accountants confirming that all of the shares are held by the business overseas.
    • A copy of the share register.
    • A Companies House certificate of registration as a UK establishment if a UK branch has been set up, or a Companies House certificate of incorporation if a wholly-owned subsidiary has been set up.
    • A letter from the employer that confirms that the employee is supervising the UK subsidiary or branch.

    How To Extend Your Representative Of An Overseas Business Visa


    The applicant of the business must submit their application for an extension on their Sole Representative Overseas Business visa before the previous visa expiration. If this is not done, then the employee may be considered an overstayer.

    To correctly extend the Representative of an Overseas Business visa, the applicant will need to complete the following steps:

    1. Correctly complete and submit the Sole Representative of an Overseas Business visa extension application form.
    2. Ensure proper payment of the application fee. This fee is £827 if the applicant applies from inside the United Kingdom, or £719 if the applicant applies from outside of the country.
    3. The applicant must also pay the Healthcare surcharge, which is £1,035 per year.
    4. Ensure that the applicant for the business arranges a meeting with their local UKVCAS service point to have their biometrics processed. This is a process in which fingerprints are scanned and a photograph is taken.
    5. Do not forget to provide any additional documents that support the applicant’s extension application for the visa. These additional documents can be uploaded online via the website or scanned when the individual attends their appointment with UKVCAS.

    Processing Time Of The Visa Renewal

    The processing time currently known for an extension of a Representative of an Overseas Business Visa is usually eight weeks. However, this can be even longer if the Home Office needs to request more documentation to support the application. It can also take longer if the applicant needs to attend an interview. Any factors that may delay the decision-making regarding the application can also lead to a longer processing time.

    This is why it is so important that the business and the representative are prepared for the extension and have all documents prepared and arranged before the application is made.

    What Happens If My Application For An Extension Is Rejected?

    If the application for a Sole Representative Visa extension for an Overseas Business is rejected, then a letter will be received from the Home Office. This letter will outline the reasons why the application was refused. It will highlight the specific grounds on which the application was rejected and then provide advice on the steps that the applicant and business can take henceforth.

    If the application is rejected, it is possible to pursue an immigration administrative review against this decision. However, it is also important to be aware that there are very strict time limits in place for doing so. Therefore, if it is necessary to do this, the request for an administrative review must be submitted within 28 days.

    Note that an administrative review is not the same thing as an appeal. Administrative reviews do not allow for new evidence to be submitted to support the application. Instead, it is a review of the original decision made by a new caseworker.

    Does your business require a representative visa extension? We can make the application process easier for you.

    How Can IAS Help?

    Businesses that require a representative visa extension application in the UK may find the process of doing so very complex. A successful application can allow business activity in the UK to resume as normal. However, to get a positive outcome, visa applications and supporting documents must all be submitted correctly.

    A business also needs to ensure that they meet the eligibility requirements of this visa category. This is why it can be very useful to have a lawyer or legal advisor help with immigration law. At IAS, our legal team are experts in immigration law and can assist as a representative of an overseas business visa extension.

    Whether the business needs assistance with the online application form, information on how to provide evidence and supporting documentation, fixed fees, or assistance in an administrative review, IAS can help. Give us a call at +44 (0)333 305 9375, reach out to us online or send an email to get started.

    We offer immigration advice sessions as face to face appointments at all of our UK offices, or via the phone.

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