Sponsor Licence

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What is a Sponsor Licence?

A Sponsor Licence is required for UK-based businesses to hire international employees from outside the European Economic Area (EEA) under the Skilled Worker, ICT Route, Tier 2, and Tier 5 visas. The licence will be valid for four years after it has been approved, with the possibility to renew it. However, before applying for a sponsorship licence, the company must ensure that all visa requirements are met. When applying for a Sponsor License, there are various severe restrictions and deadlines to meet.

Sponsor Licence Requirement

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  • The organisation must be based in the United Kingdom and operate legally there.
  • Depending on your needs, you can apply for a single licence that covers all of your UK branches, or you can apply for separate licences for each branch.
  • To operate legitimately in the UK, it is critical to have the organisation registered or inspected/monitored by a statutory agency. This must be demonstrated by producing proof and documentation that the organisation has received planning authorization or consent from the local planning commission to operate a business at a specific location.
  • The organisation must demonstrate to the Home Office that it is providing genuine work opportunities for skilled professionals and is willing to pay a fair wage.
  • While applying for the application, it is critical for an organisation to agree to embrace all of the responsibilities that come with being a Sponsor Licence holder.
  • Private individuals are usually ineligible to seek for a sponsor licence. However, if the applicant (person) is a sole trader who wants to sponsor someone to work for their company, there may be an exception.

Types of Sponsor Licence

Worker Licence

A worker sponsorship licence permits a company to hire people on a long-term or permanent basis.

Temporary Worker Licence

A Sponsorship Licence for Temporary Workers permits businesses to hire people on a contract basis.

Home Office Compliance Visit

The Home Office is responsible for examining an application for a Tier 2 Sponsor Licence and determining if the organisation has enough infrastructure to become compliant. The Home Office may decide to visit the organization’s office premises in some situations. The Home Office usually gives notice of their visits; but, they may show up without warning.

The goal of these compliance checks is to see if the company has adequate HR and recruitment procedures in place to sponsor foreign nationals and properly manage migrant workers. It also ensures that the company is meeting its legal obligations as an employer by submitting an application for a Tier 2 Sponsor Licence.

Need Help?

We have a team of experienced business immigration lawyers who can offer timely and cost-effective guidance to anyone applying for a sponsorship licence. You can be assured of receiving some of the best legal advice available in the UK today by making an appointment with one of our business immigration solicitors. We can help you with all facets of business immigration law, from filing an initial application to extending or settling your visa. Please contact us online or call our London office at 0207 242 1666 if you have any questions


We can review your current HR system and advise you on the systems you must have in place to secure and maintain your sponsor licence. Once you secure a licence there is an ongoing duty to the Home Office which you must adhere to. Failing to do can result in the Home Office withdrawing your sponsorship status. We regularly provide in house compliance advice to ensure your business is and remains fully compliant.

Once an employer has approval from the Home Office it can formally start the process of recruiting skilled migrants from outside the UK. Our corporate team can assist you in making your application to reside in the UK as a sponsored worker. Whether you are making you initial application as a Tier 2 migrant or you extension/settlement application our expert team is at hand to guide you through the process.

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