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Thomas
Thomas, Lawyer
Category: Immigration Law
Satisfied Customers: 7509
Experience:  UK Lawyer holding practising certficate for England & Wales.
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I am a US citizen working for a US company who is looking to

Resolved Question:

I am a US citizen working for a US company who is looking to explore doing business in the UK. How long can I be in the UK without a UK VISA?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Immigration Law
Expert:  Thomas replied 2 years ago.
Hi
Thank you for your question and patience, I’m Tom and I’ll try to help you.
As a US citizen you may come to the UK and attempt to enter under the visa waiver program. This means that you would not have to apply for a simply visit visa before you travel but are granted 6 months leave to remain when you arrive in the UK (though technically it is discretionary).
Leave to remain granted under the visa waiver program is for the purpose of recreational visits only. It is not intended for person seeking to carry out work-related activities.
If it is the case that you are coming to the UK to carry out exploratory meetings with a view to doing business in the future, then a Business Visitor’s Visa would be the most appropriate visa for you to apply for. The webpage on this is here:-
https://www.gov.uk/business-visitor-visa/overview
Unfortunately though, you have to apply for this in advance.
In either case the maximum time you could spend in the UK would be 6 months after you enter.
My goal is to provide you with a good service. If you feel you have received anything less, please reply back as I am happy to address follow-up issues specifically relating to your question.
Kind regards,
Tom
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Okay so you are saying I am fine to stay six months without a visa? After six months how long do I need to leave the UK for in order to reset the six months or is that a risk? Also for the past two months I have been showing the immigration at the airport my flights to the US booked 30 days out then changing them per the direction of my employer. Is that a risk? Thank you
Expert:  Thomas replied 2 years ago.
Hi,
I am saying that if you are carrying out meetings (ie. work related activities) then you should apply for a business visit visa in advance of your planned travel.
If you are simply coming for recreational purposes then you can travel without a visa and enter under the visa waiver program.
If you stay for 6 months then leave, then you would need to leave it at least another 6 months before visiting again.
I do not really understand your final sentence, but if you have booked flights in advance but then changed them on request from your employer then I doubt this would be too much of a problem provided that you are able to show that it is your employer requiring this.
Kind regards,
Tom
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Thanks Thomas. You've been very helpful and ill note that in the ratings! Now just one more thing. :) I have told the immigration at the airport upon entry in the UK I am here for recreation. If I leave to go back to the states at the holidays (around the 3 month mark) will they not let me back in? Will it be difficult to come back for another 3 months? And will they have noted in their files at immigration that I originally said I was staying for thirty days but stayed for three months? Thanks again!
Expert:  Thomas replied 2 years ago.
Hi,
It's highly likely that they would not let you back in if you left and attempt re-entry for a further 3 months. This is because you are attempting to enter multiple times within a given period and, for this, you would have to apply for a multi-entry visit visa to give you this right over a specific period of time (eg. 1, 2, 5, or 10 years - but subject always to not spending more than 6 months out of any given 12 month period in the UK).
If you state how long you will stay and stay long then they may note it on your file and this could complicate things in the future so I would avoid it really.
Kind regards,
Tom
Expert:  Thomas replied 2 years ago.
Hi
Is there any further information you require?
I just want to ensure that you are satisfied, so please let me know if you have any further queries on the information I have provided.
Kind regards,
Tom
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Hi Thomas,

I shared that information with my employer and have copy and pasted it below. I understand you are not connected to this discussion but would appreciate if you could advise if what his response is saying sounds correct? I think not?

Thank you!
Sara

this is the info I shared with him:




  • A 'waiver' for a 6 months at a time visit Visa is granted for recreational visits only. With this, you are granted 6 months to remain in the UK (although it is discretionary). Leave to remain is granted under the Visa waiver program and not intended for those seeking to carry out work-related activities.

  • If you stay in the UK without a Visa you will need to leave at the end of 6 months for at least 6 months before visiting again. With no Visa or work permit, you may only be in the UK for 6 months out of a 12 month period.

  • If it is the case that you are coming to the UK to carry out exploratory meetings with a view of doing business in the future, then a Business Visitor's Visa is required and needs to be applied for prior to entering the UK.

  • On the subject of traveling outside the UK during the 6 month period: You would have to apply for a multi-entry visit Visa. If you state how long you will stay in the UK upon entry and show flight confirmations then stay longer and show flights multiple times they will note it in your file and this could complicate your re-entry once you leave to go back to your home country and try to return (even if within the first 6 months).


this is his response:

Hi Sara, The sources I contacted previously have indicated that we are in good stead, including 'work-related activities'. I also contacted a business service in NYC with similar answer.


Expert:  Thomas replied 2 years ago.
Hi Sara,
I would disagree with their opinion for the reasons I have stated above.
It's your immigration history that is at risk here.
Kind regards
Tom
Expert:  Thomas replied 2 years ago.
Hi
Is there any further information you require?
I just want to ensure that you are satisfied, so please let me know if you have any further queries on the information I have provided.
Kind regards,
Tom
Thomas, Lawyer
Category: Immigration Law
Satisfied Customers: 7509
Experience: UK Lawyer holding practising certficate for England & Wales.
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