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Topic: Future Problems with Starting A Business  (Read 885 times)

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Future Problems with Starting A Business
« on: August 23, 2019, 12:19:13 PM »
Hello! I'm happy to say I have been in the UK for a little over two months now and am living with my husband and life in general is great!

I am investigating the possibility of becoming a home based travel agent. I love the flexibility, I already spend hours planning my own and my friends' vacations, and there are not a whole lot of jobs in my area that pay more than minimum wage. I've done a bunch of research and in the US it's very easy to become one, you essentially join a host agency for $20-50 a month and that gives you access to tons of deals on flights, cruises, and tours. However, it appears that these host agencies only accept people in the US. Trying to do something similiar in the UK means joining a franchise and forking out £15,000+ right off the bat.

I'm not sure if anyone here can give advice on this, but I haven't found much information so I thought this might be a good starting point. Plus everyone was so incredibly helpful when it came to my actual visa application.

The easiest solution would to be for me to just join a host agency using my parents' US address. However, I'm assuming this wouldn't be legal since I am a resident of the UK now. However, I am still officially a US citizen so I have a small chunk of hope that maybe it is and won't cause any issues down the road with ILR and citizenship? Another option would be creating a partnership with a friend or family member in the US who is also interested and getting paid through that company.  However, I am not sure if this would cause issues with ILR/citizenship down the road if I am either part owner or working full time for a US company.

Does anyone know anything about this or having a jumping off point for me to research? I want to make sure anything I do is 100% legal and not going to cause any visa issues down the road, my number one priority is getting to stay with my husband. If that means finding a way to do it without a host agency, then I'll resign myself to that. But being able to use all of the host agency resources is such an incredible money and time saver that I can't not investigate all of the possibilities. Thanks in advance!
Married : 2/1/2019
Priority Spouse Online App Submitted : 6/3/2019
Biometrics appointment : 7/3/2019
Documents sent to NY : 7/3/2019
Docs received in Sheffield email : 11/3/2019
Decision made email: 23/5/2019
Visa Decision: 5/6/2019 Yes!!!!!


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Re: Future Problems with Starting A Business
« Reply #1 on: August 23, 2019, 02:57:39 PM »
Hello! I'm happy to say I have been in the UK for a little over two months now and am living with my husband and life in general is great!

I am investigating the possibility of becoming a home based travel agent. I love the flexibility, I already spend hours planning my own and my friends' vacations, and there are not a whole lot of jobs in my area that pay more than minimum wage. I've done a bunch of research and in the US it's very easy to become one, you essentially join a host agency for $20-50 a month and that gives you access to tons of deals on flights, cruises, and tours. However, it appears that these host agencies only accept people in the US. Trying to do something similiar in the UK means joining a franchise and forking out £15,000+ right off the bat.

I'm not sure if anyone here can give advice on this, but I haven't found much information so I thought this might be a good starting point. Plus everyone was so incredibly helpful when it came to my actual visa application.

The easiest solution would to be for me to just join a host agency using my parents' US address. However, I'm assuming this wouldn't be legal since I am a resident of the UK now. However, I am still officially a US citizen so I have a small chunk of hope that maybe it is and won't cause any issues down the road with ILR and citizenship? Another option would be creating a partnership with a friend or family member in the US who is also interested and getting paid through that company.  However, I am not sure if this would cause issues with ILR/citizenship down the road if I am either part owner or working full time for a US company.

Does anyone know anything about this or having a jumping off point for me to research? I want to make sure anything I do is 100% legal and not going to cause any visa issues down the road, my number one priority is getting to stay with my husband. If that means finding a way to do it without a host agency, then I'll resign myself to that. But being able to use all of the host agency resources is such an incredible money and time saver that I can't not investigate all of the possibilities. Thanks in advance!

I think this is more of a contract issue than a statutory issue.  I'd read over the agency's documentation thoroughly and see what their residency requirements are.  Does the US host agency provide insurance cover for members?  If so, that might be a benefit that won't extend to you over here.  Also, if you're relying on their business materials, such as forms and contract templates, they might not be compliant with UK/EU law and could expose you to liability if you have a problem while working with UK/EU clients.  I expect you should be fine working with US clients, though, since I presume these are established companies who've been doing it for years.
9/1/2013 - "fiancée" (marriage) visa issued
4/6/2013 - married (certificate issued same-day)
5/6/2013 - FLR(M)#1 in person -- approved!
8/1/2016 - FLR(M)#2 by post -- approved!
8/5/2018 - ILR in person -- approved!
22/11/2018 - Citizenship (online, with NDRS+JCAP) -- approved!
14/12/2018 - I became a British citizen.  :)


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Re: Future Problems with Starting A Business
« Reply #2 on: August 23, 2019, 03:13:35 PM »
And beyond jfkimberly's extremely insightful comments, you would need to make sure that you are in compliance with UK and US tax filing and reporting requirements, make the appropriate self employed NI contributions etc.



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Re: Future Problems with Starting A Business
« Reply #3 on: August 23, 2019, 09:56:01 PM »
Thanks for the advice! After a bunch of asking around, I did find one agency that says they don't care about residency as long as I have a US bank account for them to pay me through. I will definitely make sure to take a hard look at their provided insurance and similar. And will speak to an accountant about taxes and everything before moving forward with any of this. If my husband and I do have to combine our incomes for ILR, would it look bad to UKVI if I had a lot or all of my income coming in from a US bank account? Or is it likely to effect my citizenship application?
Married : 2/1/2019
Priority Spouse Online App Submitted : 6/3/2019
Biometrics appointment : 7/3/2019
Documents sent to NY : 7/3/2019
Docs received in Sheffield email : 11/3/2019
Decision made email: 23/5/2019
Visa Decision: 5/6/2019 Yes!!!!!


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  • Posts: 6150

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  • Joined: Aug 2012
  • Location: End of the M4 and then a bit more.
Re: Future Problems with Starting A Business
« Reply #4 on: August 23, 2019, 10:33:02 PM »
Thanks for the advice! After a bunch of asking around, I did find one agency that says they don't care about residency as long as I have a US bank account for them to pay me through. I will definitely make sure to take a hard look at their provided insurance and similar. And will speak to an accountant about taxes and everything before moving forward with any of this. If my husband and I do have to combine our incomes for ILR, would it look bad to UKVI if I had a lot or all of my income coming in from a US bank account? Or is it likely to effect my citizenship application?

It would be really tricky, as you'd be using category F (or G?) as the owner of a business.  I'd urge you to consider conventional employment if you need to rely on the income for visa purposes.
9/1/2013 - "fiancée" (marriage) visa issued
4/6/2013 - married (certificate issued same-day)
5/6/2013 - FLR(M)#1 in person -- approved!
8/1/2016 - FLR(M)#2 by post -- approved!
8/5/2018 - ILR in person -- approved!
22/11/2018 - Citizenship (online, with NDRS+JCAP) -- approved!
14/12/2018 - I became a British citizen.  :)


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Re: Future Problems with Starting A Business
« Reply #5 on: August 24, 2019, 10:48:10 PM »
Thanks! I'll keep that in mind and look at the requirements. If I do this and also get a conventional job to cover any income gap we have, would I still have to fill things out for the self employed part of my income? Or could we just list my husband's income and my conventional income if those alone meet the  requirement? We're still four years and ten months from ILR, so it might not be a worry at all. But I don't want to rush into this without doing any research and have it blow up in our faces when it's ILR/citizenship time.
Married : 2/1/2019
Priority Spouse Online App Submitted : 6/3/2019
Biometrics appointment : 7/3/2019
Documents sent to NY : 7/3/2019
Docs received in Sheffield email : 11/3/2019
Decision made email: 23/5/2019
Visa Decision: 5/6/2019 Yes!!!!!


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Re: Future Problems with Starting A Business
« Reply #6 on: August 25, 2019, 04:07:34 AM »
Thanks! I'll keep that in mind and look at the requirements. If I do this and also get a conventional job to cover any income gap we have, would I still have to fill things out for the self employed part of my income? Or could we just list my husband's income and my conventional income if those alone meet the  requirement? We're still four years and ten months from ILR, so it might not be a worry at all. But I don't want to rush into this without doing any research and have it blow up in our faces when it's ILR/citizenship time.

In that scenario, you would be able to use just your and your husband's employment income and ignore your self employment income.

If one of you earns the whole £18,600 alone then no need to include the income of other at all.


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Re: Future Problems with Starting A Business
« Reply #7 on: August 26, 2019, 12:09:50 AM »
That's great! I feel confident we'll be able to do that. Final question (probably 😬), would it be a problem on my citizenship application at all if most of my money ends up coming from a US bank account?
Married : 2/1/2019
Priority Spouse Online App Submitted : 6/3/2019
Biometrics appointment : 7/3/2019
Documents sent to NY : 7/3/2019
Docs received in Sheffield email : 11/3/2019
Decision made email: 23/5/2019
Visa Decision: 5/6/2019 Yes!!!!!


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Re: Future Problems with Starting A Business
« Reply #8 on: August 26, 2019, 07:57:25 AM »
That's great! I feel confident we'll be able to do that. Final question (probably 😬), would it be a problem on my citizenship application at all if most of my money ends up coming from a US bank account?

Citizenship doesn’t have a financial requirement.


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Re: Future Problems with Starting A Business
« Reply #9 on: August 26, 2019, 08:57:14 AM »
That's great! I feel confident we'll be able to do that. Final question (probably 😬), would it be a problem on my citizenship application at all if most of my money ends up coming from a US bank account?

As KFdancer mentioned, there is no financial requirement for citizenship but you would just need to make sure that all your money had been taxed appropriately in order to stay on the right side of the good character requirement.  :)


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Re: Future Problems with Starting A Business
« Reply #10 on: August 26, 2019, 09:37:06 AM »
Beautiful! Thank you guys so much again! This forum is amazing!
Married : 2/1/2019
Priority Spouse Online App Submitted : 6/3/2019
Biometrics appointment : 7/3/2019
Documents sent to NY : 7/3/2019
Docs received in Sheffield email : 11/3/2019
Decision made email: 23/5/2019
Visa Decision: 5/6/2019 Yes!!!!!


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