Business Visa Application

Success of a UK Business Visa Application is dependent on honest, accurate documentation, forms  supporting evidence. Generally, visas are granted and sent by mail, without a personal interview

The business visitor category is for nationals of countries outside the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland, who want to visit the UK for a short period of business related activity.

Getting the right immigration advice from a UK immigration lawyer based in Delhi, means being assured that your company UK Visa requirements can be dealt with without having to deal with a immigration law firm based abroad.

Types of Business Activities

You may be able to come to the UK as a business visitor if you are one of the following:

Business Persons(referred as Other type of Business Visitor)– You can apply to come to the UK as a business visitor if you intend to carry out any of the following ‘permitted activities‘ in the UK:

  • attending meetings (including interviews that have been arranged before you come to the UK) or conferences;
  • arranging deals, or negotiating or signing trade agreements or contracts;
  • undertaking fact-finding missions;
  • conducting site visits;
  • delivering goods and passengers from abroad (as a lorry driver or coach driver, for example, provided you are genuinely working an international route);
  • accompanying a tour group as a tour group courier, provided you are contracted to a firm outside the UK, and you intend to leave with that tour group;
  • speaking at a ‘one-off’ conference where this is not run as a commercial concern;
  • representing a foreign manufacturer by coming to service or repair its products within their initial period of guarantee;
  • representing a foreign machine manufacturer by coming to erect and install machinery too heavy to be delivered in one piece, as part of the contract of purchase and supply;
  • interpreting or translating for visiting business persons, provided you are employed by the overseas company and are coming solely to provide this service for the visiting company member;
  • acting as a monteur (a worker such as a fitter or serviceperson) for up to 6 months to erect, dismantle, install, service, repair or advise on the development of foreign-made machinery;
  • attending board meetings in the UK as a board-level director, provided you are not employed by a UK company (although you may be paid a fee for attending the meeting); and
  • representing a computer software company by coming to install, debug or enhance their products. You may also come here as a business visitor to be briefed about a UK customer’s requirements – but if you use your expertise to make a detailed assessment of a potential customer’s requirements, this will be regarded as consultancy work, for which you will need a visa under the points-based system.

Secondee from an overseas company – The UK company providing the secondment must have a contract to provide goods or services (but no corporate relationship) with your overseas employer, which must continue to employ and pay you.

In some cases, you may need to apply for a visa under Tier 2 or Tier 5 of the points-based system.

Adviser, consultant, trainer or trouble shooter – You must be employed abroad by the company to which the client firm in the UK belongs, but this must not amount to employment for the UK firm. You must not do paid or unpaid work for theUK firm’s clients.

Person undertaking specific, one-off training – The training must be: provided by your employer (or one of itsUK branches); and delivered in techniques and work practices used in theUK, provided this is not on-the job training.

Visiting professor accompanying students on a study abroad programme – You must be a professor or teacher from an overseas academic institution. While in theUK, you may undertake a small amount of teaching, limited to the institution hosting the students you are supervising. However, you must be employed and paid by the overseas academic institution, and must not intend to base yourself or seek employment in theUK.

Religious worker – You can come to the UK for a business visit (for example, to attend a conference) and undertake some preaching or pastoral work during your visit. You must be based abroad, and you must not intend to take up an office, post or appointment in theUK. 

If you want to come to the UK to fill a vacancy as a religious worker for a recognised religion, and will be undertaking preaching and pastoral work, you will need to apply for a visa under Tier 2 (Minister of religion) or Tier 5 (Temporary worker – religious worker) of the points-based system.


Film crew – You must be an actor, producer, director or technician who is on a location shoot only, and employed or paid by an overseas company or programme.


Representative of overseas news media – You must be employed or paid by an overseas company and be gathering information for an overseas publication.


Academic visitor – You must be:

  • on sabbatical leave from an overseas academic institution, and wanting to use your leave to carry out research in theUK(for example, to do research for a book); or
  • an academic (including a doctor) taking part in formal exchange arrangements with UK counterparts; or
  • an eminent senior doctor or dentist coming to take part in research, teaching or clinical practice.

Additionally, you must not:

  • receive funding for your work from any UK source (except payments of expenses or reasonable honoraria, and payments on an exchange basis); or
  • engage in any work other than the academic activity for which you are being admitted; or
  • fill a normal post or a genuine vacancy in theUK.

If you are on sabbatical leave from a private research company, you cannot be an academic visitor. Instead, you should apply for a visa under Tier 2 or Tier 5 of the points-based system.


Doctor undertaking a clinical attachment, or dentist undertaking a clinical observer post – You must be a graduate from a genuine medical or dental school, and provide documentary evidence of a clinical attachment or dental observer post which will:involve observation only and not treatment of patients; and be unpaid.


Doctor taking the Professional and Linguistic Assessment Board (PLAB) test – You must:be a graduate from a genuine medical school;intend to take the PLAB test in theUK; and provide documentary evidence of a confirmed test date or of your eligibility to take the PLAB test.



You should provide documents to show that you meet the below listed requirements, that you –

  • are 18 or over;
  • intend to visit the UK for no more than 6 months (or 12 months if you are an academic visitor), unless you are a doctor taking the PLAB test (in which case you can apply to extend your stay and undertake a clinical attachment if you pass the PLAB test);
  • intend to leave the UK at the end of your visit;
  • have enough money to support and accommodate yourself without working or help from public funds, or you and any dependants will be supported and accommodated by relatives or friends;
  • are based abroad and do not intend to transfer your base to the UK, even temporarily;
  • receive your salary from abroad (although it is acceptable for you to receive reasonable travel and subsistence expenses while you are in theUK);
  • would not be replacing someone in theUK, including for temporary leave periods;
  • can meet the cost of the return or onward journey; and
  • are not in transit to a country outside the ‘Common Travel Area’ (Ireland, theUK, the Isle of Man and theChannel Islands).

You must also be able to show that, during your visit, you do not intend to:

  • take paid or unpaid employment, produce goods or provide services, including the selling of goods or services directly to members of the public;
  • do a course of study;
  • marry or register a civil partnership, or give notice of marriage or civil partnership; or
  • receive private medical treatment.


If you apply for a visa, you should provide these documents with your visa application. If you travel to the UK without a visa, you should bring them with you so that you can show them to the UKBA officers at the border.

You should provide as many relevant documents as you can to show that you qualify for entry to theUK. If you do not provide them, they may refuse your application.

You must decide which documents will best support your application. It is advised you to consider providing documents that contain:

  • information about you
  • information about your finances and employment
  • your accommodation and travel details
  • information about your visit to theUK

Do you need a Visa?

You will need a visa if you:

  • are a visa national [1]; or
  • are stateless (you do not have a nationality); or
  • hold a non-national travel document (a travel document which does not give you the nationality of the country that issued it); or
  • hold a passport issued by an authority that is not recognised in theUK.

Even if you do not need a visa, you may decide that you should apply for one anyway.


Application Process:

Depending on where you live, you may be able to make your visa application online or by printing out and completing one of the following application forms [2]:

  • application form VAF1E – if you are applying as an academic visitor
  • application form VAF2 – if you are a doctor undertaking a clinical attachment or taking the PLAB test, or a dentist undertaking a clinical observer post
  • application form VAF1C – if you are any other type of business visitor

As part of your application, you will need to enrol for a ‘biometric information’ test at a visa application centre.

You can apply for a visa up to 3 months before your date of travel to theUK. Before you apply, you must:

  • prepare the supporting documents that you will need;
  • be tested to show that you do not have tuberculosis if you are applying for a UK visa of longer than 6 months;
  • be ready for a biometric test at one of the visa application centres;
  • be able to pay the visa application fee; and
  • provide documents that:support the statements that you make in your visa application; and show that the information in your application is true.

You cannot submit documents after you have completed your application at the visa application centre, unless the UKBA staff ask you for them.

For every document provided, you must include the original document and a photocopy. This includes a copy of your passport bio-data page (the page containing your photograph). Please ensure that the photocopies are of good quality and can be read easily.

If you do not have a document that is listed in the guidance, or that you think might be relevant to your application, you should explain why you do not have it. You must not provide a false document. If you provide a false document, UKBA will automatically refuse your application, and you could be banned from coming to the UK for 10 years. If you do not provide original documents, it might be difficult for the UKBA officers to assess your application accurately, and your application might be delayed or refused.

If you do not have a document, or your documents are not written in English or Welsh, it must be accompanied by a full translation that can be independently verified by the UKBA. Each translated document must contain:


  • confirmation from the translator that it is an accurate translation of the original document;
  • the date of the translation;
  • the translator’s full name and signature; and
  • the translator’s contact details.

If you do not submit translations of all supporting documents, this may result in your application being delayed or refused.

If you are not working, you should include the original financial documents of the person who supports you.If someone else is paying for your trip, you should explain why they are paying and include their original financial documents.

Refusals and Appeals

UKBA will base the decision on the documents submitted, they may require the need to interview if they are unable to make an immediate decision.

If the UKBA refuses your application for a visa or to enter the UK, then the immigration officer or entry clearance officer will send or give you a notice of refusal (the Notice of Immigration Decision), listing the reasons for the refusal, and whether you have the right to appeal. If there is a right to appeal then the IAFT-2 form will be sent to you along with the notice of decision.

If you want to appeal and you have the right to appeal, you must do so within 28 days of receiving the notice of the decision. To appeal you must complete the IAFT-2 form and send it with your notice of decision to the address or fax number at the bottom of this page; or complete and submit an online appeal form on the Ministry of Justice website . The form needs to be completed in English and should explain your reasons why you think UKBA was wrong in refusing you application. If you have documents supporting your grounds for appeal, you should send these with the form. These documents must be in English or accompanied by a certified translation.


How can Lex Meridian help you?

Pre Visa Application CounsellingAdvise you of all other basic requirements of UK Business Visa Application process and the category under which your application will fall. We ensure that your UK Business Visa case is best presented to ensure that the chances of success are the highest. We can also provide you with a document checklist to make sure all is in order with your case and nothing is overlooked and once this is done we will verify the same for you before the application is submitted.

Post Visa Application Decision We also assist in and handle visa refusals. If for any reason your visa has been refused and you have a right to appeal we with the help of our experienced English barristers help you with appeals, administrative reviews and judicial reviews. Our barristers hold more than a decade of experience in visa refusals and appeals. They can advise you on the merits of your case and assist you in your case either through telephonic advice or representing you in courts.

Call our Delhi Office today on +91 11 41601800, or our London Office 0208 123 9999  or email your query to for a consultation with a UK Immigration Barrister in Delhi. 


Our Other Immigration Services:

  • UK Employment Visas    read more