Moving To Jersey As A Business, Successful Entrepreneur Or HNWI
Ordinarily you have to live in Jersey continuously for 5 years and gain Entitled for work status* before you can start a business or work in most jobs. You also have to live in Jersey continuously for 10 years and gain Entitled status* to access the full property market. However, there are exceptions, Jersey welcomes applications from:
- Skilled, economically active High Net Worth Individuals (HNWIs); and
- High value activity businesses and their principals, who are looking to move offshore.
For these individuals there are two routes that can be followed:
- Business relocation; this is for businesses which want to establish on the Island. This route gives the business principals (or essential employees) the option to apply for a ‘Licensed’ permission. Individuals can then access the full residential market.
- High value residency; this route is income based and gives individuals ‘Entitled’ status. Individuals gain full residential and employment rights, subject to specific conditions.
*see the table below for definitions.
Residency And Employment
The Control of Housing and Work (Jersey) Law has 4 main categories of residential and employment status. These determine where you can live and work in Jersey and are summarised in the table below.
Immigration - Visas
If you are:
- Irish; or
- Hold settled or pre-settled status
You do not require a visa to enter, visit, work, study or settle in Jersey.
An immigration permission in the form of a visa will be required for anyone else who wishes to come and work in Jersey.
Certain nationalities require visas regardless of the purpose of their stay in Jersey. All nationalities require a visa if they wish to work, study or settle in Jersey.
The Jersey visa requirements are the same as the UK visa requirements. You can find out if you need a visa by visiting the UK visas website. Schengen visas are not valid in Jersey.
If you are an EU, EEA or Swiss national you do not require a visa to visit Jersey for up to 6 months.
If you require a visa to enter Jersey, you must apply for it before you travel.
To check if you need a UK visa and to apply for a UK visa follow the links at the bottom of this page to the gov.uk website.
Immigration - Work Permits
Employers may also need to apply for a work permit (under the Immigration (Work Permits) (Jersey) Rules 1995) for someone they want to employ, if that person needs immigration permission to enter or remain in Jersey for work.
Work permits are issued by the Jersey Customs and Immigration Service. See Recruiting Staff.
You don’t need a permit to work in Jersey if you’re:
- a British or Irish citizen or a British subject with the right of abode
- an EU / EEA passport holder who holds settled or pre-settled status
- a family member of an EU / EEA passport holder who holds settled or pre-settled status
- a Commonwealth citizen admitted on the grounds of UK ancestry
- a Commonwealth citizen with a certificate of entitlement to the right of abode
- a participant in the Youth Mobility Scheme
- a minister of religion
- a business visitor
- a non-EU / EEA passport holder who has no restrictions attached to your stay
There are 2 types of Work Permits:
- temporary; and
Skilled work permits: These are granted for an initial period of up to 3 years, which can be extended further. More details on the criteria and jobs that are eligible for a work permit in this category are detailed in the work permit policy. There are some roles which are eligible for this work permit type but exempt from the skilled worker salary threshold. These roles are listed in Appendix 3 of the work permit policy (see links at the bottom of this page)
Temporary work permits: These are granted for up to 9 months in the hospitality, agricultural and fishing industries. Temporary permits may also be granted to the construction industry for an initial period of 1 year and are renewable up to a maximum period of 4 years. More details on the criteria and jobs that are eligible for a work permit in this category are detailed in the work permit policy (follow the links at the bottom of this page).
When to apply for a work permit:
The employer should apply for a work permit before the prospective employee comes to Jersey.
If a work permit is approved, the employee must then apply for their UK Visa. The processing time for a permit is 3 weeks. The employer must allow enough time for the work permit to be issued and the prospective employee to apply for a visa before the employee travels to Jersey.
Follow the links at the bottom of the page for more information.
Residential/Working Status for Married Couples and Civil Partners who Move to Jersey
Each application is dealt with on a case by case basis.
Usually if you have:
- Entitled status as a High Value Resident; or
- a Licensed permission as a business principal/essential employee,
Your husband/wife/civil partner will be granted Entitled for Work Only status so long as you retain that permission.
If you are granted a Registered permission, your spouse or Civil Partner will also have Registered permission.
The Residential and Employment Status policy guidance has more detailed information.
Residential/Working Status for Non-Married Couples
Each application is dealt with on a case by case basis.
If you are not married to your partner, they will not benefit from your residential or working status. They will have Registered status until they have completed 5 years residency. After 5 years they will become Entitled for Work Only.
If before that time they want to
- apply for a role within a Jersey company – the company would need to have a permission to employ an individual who does not have 5 years residency; or
- start their own business – they would have to submit an application for a business licence as an registered individual.
Any long-term, co-habiting relationship of at least 3 years with an Entitled or Licensed person may be taken into account as part of an employment or business licence application.
A long-term co-habiting relationship would need to be proven by documentation across a 3 year period. Where possible documents should be addressed in both names. Documents addressed to each person may be acceptable, provided they show the same address.
This evidence should be from different and authoritative sources for example:
- joint mortgage;
- utility bills;
- bank statements;
- tenancy agreements;
- insurance policies/certificates or other correspondence;
- loan agreements; and
- correspondence from government departments or agencies etc.
For more information see the Links at the bottom of this page.
Residential Rules for Children Under 16
Each individual’s residential status is specific to their circumstances.
Usually, when someone moves to the Island before the age of 16 they will have Registered status. They will have Registered status until they have completed 5 years continuous residency. After 5 years they will become Entitled for Work Only. After 10 years continuous they will achieve Entitled status.
Time spent in full-time education outside of Jersey may be considered as continuous residence, if:
- the child was ordinarily living in Jersey immediately before beginning higher education; and
- both parents remain ordinarily resident in Jersey for the entire period of study.
If your child has not reached 5 years residency but a wants part-time job, employers do not need a registered permission to employ them, if:
- your child arrived in Jersey at 16 years old or under; and
- is in full time education.
Residential and Working Status Rules for Children Over 16
Each individual’s residential status is specific to their circumstances and will be assessed as such.
Generally, when someone moves to the Island after the age of 16 they will have Registered status. After 5 years continuous residency, they will gain Entitled for Work Only status. After 10 years continuous residency they will achieve Entitled status.
If the child has not completed 5 years continuous residency, a Jersey company would need a Registered permission to employ them.
The following may be taken into account in an employment application, if the Registered person is:
- under 25; and
- the child of a resident Entitled/Entitled for Work Only or Licensed person,
Time spent outside of Jersey for full-time education may be considered as continuous residence, if:
- your child is under 25 years old when you move to Jersey; and
- your child was ordinarily resident in Jersey immediately before beginning higher education; and
- both parents remain ordinarily resident in Jersey for the entire period of the study.
Residency and Change in Marital Circumstances
If you become
- divorced; or
You may be able to qualify for ‘entitled’ status on hardship, economic or social grounds.
Each case is assessed according to the individual circumstances and will take account of Residential and Employment Status Policy Guidance (March 2018).
These are considered to be exceptional cases and the final decision is made by the Chief Minister.
For more information see the Links at the bottom of this page.
EU Citizens and Brexit
Jersey has its own EU Settlement Scheme to ensure that EU citizens who live in the Island are able to stay. The Jersey EU Settlement Scheme provides:
- settled status to successful applicants who have been living in Jersey continuously for 5 years or more by 31st December 2020. This allows them to continue to living and working in Jersey. They will also be able to apply for British nationality.
- pre-settled status to applicants who fulfill all the requirements of the application but have been living in Jersey for less than 5 years. This includes those who move to Jersey between the end of 2018 and 31st December 2020. After they have completed 5 years residence they can then apply for settled status.
- the ability family members who are living with, or join, EU citizens in Jersey by 31st December 2020, to apply for settled status, after 5 years in the Island.
- close family members (spouses, civil and unmarried partners, dependent children and grandchildren, and dependent parents and grandparents) the ability to join EU citizens in the Island (where the family relationship existed on 31st December 2020).
EU citizens who arrive in Jersey 31st October 2019 will have to apply for settled status if they choose to stay in Jersey longer than 3 months.
To apply for settled status you need to provide the following to the Jersey Customs and Immigration Service:
- an identity document (Passport or National Identity Document); and
- a recent photograph to confirm your identity and nationality; and
- declaration of any criminal convictions.
The application process is quick and user-friendly, and uses a mobile app. The application process will check three simple things:
- your identity
- the length of your residence in Jersey
- any criminal convictions. Only serious or persistent criminality will affect eligibility for the scheme
If you already have, either:
- indefinite leave to remain; or
- permanent residence
You will have to apply to the Jersey EU Settlement Scheme in the same way as all other EU citizens.
Irish citizens enjoy a right of residence in Jersey that is not reliant on any relationship with the EU.
Your ability to remain in Jersey is unaffected by Brexit. You do not have to apply for settled status under the Jersey EU Settlement Scheme.
Purchasing Property and Residential Status
Licensed individuals are only allowed to own and occupy one property as their sole or principal place of residence.
High Value Residents (2(1)e residents) are expected to buy or rent a high value property. High value property is considered to be of a minimum value of £1.75 million for a house and £900,000 for an apartment*. High Value Residents can also, subject to certain conditions:
- buy, develop and sell residential properties through a property development company. Any free-standing units of residential accommodation must be sold to Entitled or Licensed individuals on completion of the development;
- can buy residential properties in their own name which have been unoccupied, or have been on the market for sale, for more than 2 years. These properties must be leased to Entitled or Licensed persons;
- can buy a residential property that adjoins their main place of residence in Jersey if:
- the adjoining property more naturally falls within the same curtilage as the property already owned and occupied as their main residence; and
- it is approved by the Assistant Chief Minister
It is expected that the purchase would be completed in the same name, either person or company, as their main residence. There may also be other conditions placed on the purchase. N.B any income derived from Jersey property is taxed at 20%.
*All rates may be subject to review and may change on an annual basis. Information accurate as at 1st Jan 2020.
“Once we got a license to work on the Island, everything else fell into place. Locate Jersey were especially helpful assisting us in formulating a business plan to the practicalities of relocation and living in Jersey. The only real challenge was getting a visa for my partner, who’s American. However, Locate Jersey even helped guide us through that, so we were very impressed and relieved.”
Richard Parkinson (Co-Founder SM2)
Strategically positioned between the UK and Europe, Jersey opens up a world of connections.
- Enviable quality of life & work-life balance
- Highly regarded & well-regulated international jurisdiction
- Safe, secure community lifestyle
- Low personal & business taxes