As a follow up to your consultation, please find below details of the application process.
As a UK registered business, to employ skilled workers, UK companies need to hold the relevant sponsorship licence from UK Visas & Immigration (UKVI) before employing permanent or temporary foreign workers. Workers must have a job offer from an employer that has made a successful sponsor licence application before they can apply to come to, or remain in, the UK for work.
The licence will last for a period of 4 years and if you wish to continue the employment of the migrant then the licence must be renewed before the expiry date in order to continue as a sponsor. The responsibility to renew this remains in the hands of the sponsor, though reminder notices are issued by the Home Office.
To obtain a sponsor licence, you will need to satisfy UK Visas and Immigration that:
To establish that you are a genuine organisation operating lawfully in the UK, you will need to submit a number of company-related documents. The exact documents will depend upon the type of organisation that you are and the tiers that you wish to sponsor migrants under.
What do I need to do to get a licence?
Once we have submitted your online application, we will then send to the Home Office all of the following to validate your application:
UKVI will assess whether you are honest, dependable and reliable by looking at your history and background, as well as that of the key personnel named on your application and any people involved in the day to day running of your business. UKVI will examine your current human resources and recruitment practices in order to make sure that you are able to fulfil your sponsor duties. Under the genuineness test, UKVI will look at the role that you are seeking to recruit foreign nationals for, and the extent to which this role fits within your organisation as a whole.
Responsibilities of sponsorship
In applying for a licence and subsequently issuing COS (Certificate of Sponsor) to migrants, the employing organisation accepts that they will comply with a number of requirements.
You and your staff will be checked to make sure you're suitable for these roles. You may not get your licence if anyone involved in sponsorship has:
You and your allocated staff must also:
Your allocated staff must usually be paid members of staff, or office holders.
You need to pay a fee when you apply. The fee depends on the type of licence you’re applying for and what type of organisation you are.
|Type of licence||Free for small or charitable sponsors||Free for medium or large sponsors|
|Worker and Temporary Worker||£536||£1,476|
|Add a Worker licence to an existing Temporary Worker Licence||No fee||£940|
|Add a Temporary Worker licence to an existing Worker licence||No fee||No fee|
How to tell if you’re a small or charitable sponsor
You’re usually a small sponsor if at least 2 of the following apply:
Most applications (8 out of 10) are dealt with in less than 8 weeks. UKVI may need to visit your business.
You may be able to pay £500 to get a decision within 10 working days. You’ll be told if you can after you apply.
Certificates of sponsorship
You must assign a certificate of sponsorship to each foreign worker you employ. This is an electronic record, not a physical document. Each certificate has its own number which a worker can use to apply for a visa.
Certificates are free for citizens of the following countries:
Austria, Belgium, Croatia, Republic of Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, North Macedonia, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden or Turkey.
For other citizens, you need to pay for each certificate.
|Type of licence||Cost Per Certificate|
|Worker (except workers on the International Sportsperson visa)||£199|
|International Sportsperson - where the certificate of sponsorship is assigned for more than 12 months||£199|
|International Sportsperson - where the certificate of sponsorship is assigned for 12 months or less||£21|
Immigration skills charge
You might have to pay an additional charge when you assign a certificate of sponsorship to someone applying for a Skilled Worker or Intra-company Transfer visa. This is called the ‘immigration skills charge’.
You must pay the immigration skills charge if they’re applying for a visa from:
When you do not need to pay
You will not pay the immigration skills charge if you’re sponsoring someone:
You will also not have to pay the charge if you’re sponsoring someone with one of the following occupation codes:
You also might not have to pay the charge if you’re sponsoring a worker who was assigned a certificate before 6 April 2017. You will not need to pay the charge for any of the worker’s dependants, for example their partner or child.
How much it costs
The amount you need to pay is based on:
|Period||Small or charitable sponsors||Medium or large sponsors|
|First 12 months||£364||£1,000|
|Each additional 6 months||£182||£500|
How much to pay based on how long the worker will work for you
If the worker will be in the UK for longer than 6 months but less than a year, you must pay for at least 12 months.
You must pay the full charge in one go.
The longest you can sponsor a worker for is 5 years, so the most you’ll have to pay is:
UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) will contact you if you do not pay the charge or pay the wrong amount. You’ll have 10 working days to pay the charge - the worker’s visa application will be refused if you do not.
How our immigration consultants can help
Our business immigration consultants assist UK employers to obtain the right sponsor licence, maintain their licence at the highest rating and comply with their sponsor duties.
Whether you require advice on the correct company-related documentation to provide in support of a sponsor licence application, assistance with drafting a compelling business case that will satisfy UKVI that you need a sponsor licence in order to fill a genuine role or guidance on running a compliant recruitment process, our immigration consultants can manage the sponsor licence application process on your behalf.
We pride ourselves on being approachable and proactive in understanding and meeting our business clients’ needs. We are a highly driven team, dedicated to providing clear and reliable immigration advice directly to UK employers as part of a professional and friendly service.
Our Fee for Sponsorship Licence Application
We will charge you a fee from £4,000.00 for our professional immigration services in relation to your application for sponsorship licence.
The agreed fee will cover all our work until a decision by the Home Office has been reached on the application. However, it is pertinent to note that the agreed fee will not cover any disbursements to be incurred by the company on your behalf e.g. translation of documents, Home 0ffice licence fee etc.
Please do not hesitate to contact me should you have any questions on this matter.Download Our Brochure
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