Does your business need a sponsorship licence?

Recruiting talent outside of the UK: Workforce planning for post January 2021

Your business is nothing without your people – so let us work with you to build the foundations to drive your business into the future.

What is a sponsorship licence?

A sponsorship licence allows an organisation working within the UK to act as a sponsor to employ migrant workers under the points-based system (i.e. you'll be the eyes and ears for the UKVI). If a licence is awarded, the organisation will be granted access to an online sponsor management system and added to the national register of sponsors.

Why should your business apply?

From 1 January 2021, EU nationals arriving in the UK will be subject to the UK's new immigration system. There will be a "one size fits all" approach for hiring EU and non-EU migrants from this date. Without a sponsor licence, your business will not be able to recruit skilled workers from outside of the UK.

What are the key requirements for this application?

  • Legitimate business. There must be no reason to believe that the company is a threat to immigration control and is committed to fulfilling its sponsorship duties.
  • Allocation of Roles. You will need to appoint and delegate responsibility to manage the sponsor licence to an Authorising Officer, Level 1 user and Key Contact.
  • Appropriate Systems. You will need appropriate HR systems in place to monitor sponsored employees.
  • Skill level. You must check that the job meets the required skill level using the Standard Occupational Classifications ("SOC") code and Appendix J of the Immigration Rules (subject to the new rules post January 2021). 
  • Type of Licence. You will need to consider whether to apply for a Skilled Worker or Intra-Company Transfer licence.

How much will it cost to apply?

Application Fees:

There are two different application fees for a sponsor licence:

  • £536 – Small sponsor (i.e. no more than 50 employees and/or turnover less than £10.2 million)
  • £1,476 – all other sponsors.

Legal Fees

Our aim is to support clients with this sponsor licence application process, but we understand that client needs differ. We are offering two levels of service as follows:

  • Full service. This will involve us preparing the application form on your behalf, gathering supporting documents and answering all queries. £2,500 – £3,500 plus VAT.
  • Review service. This will involve us reviewing the completed application form and providing any necessary feedback ahead of submission. £980 plus VAT.

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