Posted by Nick Day on 29 Sep 2011
The UK Investor Visa
In March 2011 the Government introduced new visa rules as a way of attracting foreign entrepreneurs and investors. They call this the UK Investor Visa.
The new rules enable investors that qualify for the UK investor visa to permanently settle in the UK a great deal faster than under normal rules whilst entrepreneurs are able to settle more quickly if they create ten or more jobs or reach a turnover of £5M within a three year period.
The UK Investor Visa is a fantastic scheme for attracting foreign investment within the UK, but it doesn’t answer the question of where and how a foreign investor should invest their funds in a tax efficient manner.
Whilst the rules surrounding the scheme are fairly rigid in regard to how much can be invested and in what kind of company, there is no reason that a foreign investor should have to plan any less tax efficiently than a UK citizen.
Even the most basic of advisers should be leaning towards an EIS or VCT scheme as a tax efficient vehicle, but the more pro-active planner might in terms of an overall strategy put forward the idea of an excluded property trust.
The nature of residence and domicile should be be explored to ensure that should a foreign investor later decide to leave the UK, they can do so having been fully advised on residence and domicile taxation, or indeed if they do stay on a more long term basis, they are able to ring-fence and safeguard any investments they might have outside the UK.
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