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How to apply for a sponsor licence

Are you considering applying for a sponsor licence but unsure of the process and requirements? In this video, our Business Immigration experts walk you through the key considerations, preparation steps, required documents, processing times, and costs associated with applying for a licence. Join Shabana Muneer and Ruth Jowett, as they shed light on how to apply for a sponsor licence.

Click here to watch our the video.

Your sponsor licence application

In today’s business landscape, many organisations in the United Kingdom seek to employ migrant workers to meet their talent needs. However, to hire non-settled workers (i.e. non-British/Irish nationals or individuals not holding an immigration status that permits work), companies must obtain a sponsor licence granted by the Home Office. To ensure a smooth application process, it is vital for companies to understand the criteria that the Home Office examines when reviewing sponsor licence applications.

Before companies decide to make an application for a sponsor licence in the UK, there are several important factors they need to consider. Understanding the criteria that the Home Office will assess is crucial in order to prepare a strong application. The Home Office evaluates whether the organisation is a genuine organisation operating lawfully in the UK. The company’s capability to fulfil sponsor duties and meet route-specific requirements is also evaluated.

To prepare for the application, companies should have confidence in their HR policies and practices to demonstrate their ability to comply with sponsorship requirements. This includes having systems in place to monitor attendance, maintain records, conduct right to work checks, and track visa expiry dates. Additionally, key personnel, such as the Authorising Officer, Key Contact, and Level 1 User, must be selected to meet the Home Office’s requirements.

Supporting documents are essential for the application process. Appendix A of the Sponsor Guidance provides a list of required information and evidence. Companies will need to submit a hierarchy chart, disclose ownership and directorship details, and provide documents to prove genuine operation within the UK.

The processing time for sponsor licence applications is not quick, and it is advisable to allocate up to a month for preparation before submitting the application. After submission, the typical processing time is around 8 weeks. There is an expedited priority service available for an additional fee, but its availability is limited.

In terms of costs, fees are payable to the Home Office when the sponsor licence application is submitted and when each worker is sponsored. The fees vary based on factors such as the organisation’s size, the occupation code selected for the worker, sponsorship duration, and the applicant’s location. The one-off sponsor licence application fee, certificate of sponsorship fee, and Immigration Skills Charge are some of the expenses involved. Additionally, individual visa application fees must be considered.

How we can help

Taking into account these considerations and requirements is crucial for companies planning to apply for a sponsor licence in the UK, ensuring a smooth and successful application process. If you have any questions on following the guidelines outlined in this video, contact Shabana or Ruth to help you navigate the application process with confidence and increase your chances of a successful outcome.

Want to learn more from our Business Immigration experts and be the first to receive important updates, developments and events from the team? Then visit our Business Immigration Hub page or sign up for our updates here.



Employment & Immigration

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Employment & Immigration

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