Sponsor Licence Application

Our lawyers can help you secure your Sponsor Licence with our Sponsor Licence Application Package

If you are a UK employer and you want to employ someone from outside of the EEA or Switzerland, you will need to apply for a UK Sponsor Licence. This includes if you are intending to employ them for unpaid or charity work.

Before you make an application for a UK Sponsor Licence, you must first make sure that your business meets the eligibility requirements. You must then decide which company member will be managing the sponsorship. After this, you can proceed with your Sponsor Licence application, which can be made online or by post.

IAS can help you with each stage of your application for a Sponsor Licence. Our Sponsor Licence application package ensures that you are compliant with all Home Office expectations and that you have the correct records for all migrant personnel. This service will also ensure that you are prepared for the ‘genuine business’ test and your visit from the Home Office. Our services also include an Immigration Audit. This will identify and resolve any issues with your HR systems, records, and documents before the submission of your Sponsor Licence application. Contact us now for tailored assistance with your application for a Sponsorship Licence.


Am I eligible to apply for a Sponsor Licence?

In order to be eligible for a Sponsor Licence you must meet the following criteria:

  • You can prove you are a legitimate business
  • You can ensure your sponsored employee(s) passes a personality test
  • You can prove a skilled worker from outside the EEA or Switzerland is needed for the position
  • You do not have any unspent criminal convictions
  • You do not have a history of failing to carry out sponsorship duties
  • You can pay the appropriate rate of pay for the job(s) you are conducting.

You will need to prove that you have a legitimate business or organisation and that you have a genuine need for the migrant worker(s) you intend to employ. The Home Office may validate this by visiting your company during your application.

Which visas do I need a Licence to sponsor?

You will need a Sponsor Licence if you want to employ anyone from outside of EEA or Switzerland who is working in the UK using:

Depending on which type of worker you wish to employ, you need to make a Sponsor Licence application which is relevant to them.

You do not need to apply for a Sponsorship Licence if you are intending to employ someone on a Tier 1 Visa, for example, an Exceptional Talent Visa.

Please note that Tier 3 Unskilled Worker Visas have been suspended. This means that you cannot apply for a Sponsor Licence for non-EEA nationals taking on unskilled roles.

What happens if my Sponsor Licence application is successful?

If your application is successful, you will be awarded a licence rating by the Home Office and placed on the UK Sponsorship Licence register.

After this, you will be able to issue Certificates of Sponsorship to any non-EEA or Swiss nationals if you have jobs that are suitable for sponsorship.

Upon the date of issue, your licence will be valid for four years. If you do not adhere to your duties as a sponsor, you could face Sponsor Licence suspensionSponsor Licence revocation, or the possibility of receiving a Civil Penalty from the Home Office.

Why was my Sponsor Licence application refused?

There are number of reasons why the Home Office refuse Sponsor Licence applications and Sponsor Licence renewals each year. The most common reasons include:

  • the business’ failure to pass the Home Office’s Compliance Audit;
  • the business’ failure to retain sufficient documentation on sponsored migrant workers;
  • the business has not informed the Home Office of significant changes to their migrant workforce;
  • the business has not responded to the Home Office’s enquiries on time;
  • the business does not pass its ‘genuineness test’; or
  • the business does not comply with the Home Office’s security standards.

How can IAS help?

IAS have some of the best immigration lawyers in the UK who are happy to assist you through the process of making a Sponsor Licence application. We will:

  • ensure that your business is eligible to obtain a Sponsor Licence;
  • ensure that you have all the required up-to-date employee records and HR documents;
  • ensure that all time-frames are met;
  • correspond with the Home Office on your behalf;
  • prepare you for a visit with Home Office officials;
  • make sure your business is compliant with all Home Office standards; and
  • complete your application to the highest standard before submitting.

At IAS, we offer a tailor-made Sponsor Licence Application Package which encompasses these services. We also offer general Immigration Consultancy services, which are designed to assess and improve a UK company’s HR methods. With this, we provide an Immigration Audit, which allows our advisers to locate and resolve any issues or gaps in your records of sponsored employees. Contact us now for more information.

Our Sponsor Licence Packages

Advice Package

Comprehensive immigration advice tailored to your circumstances and goals


Application Package

Designed to make your visa application as successful, smooth and stress-free as possible


Fast Track Package

Premium application service that ensures your visa application is submitted to meet your deadline


Appeal Package

Ensure you have the greatest chance of a successful appeal. We will represent you in any hearings/tribunals


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