You need to apply for a sponsor licence as an employer if you want to hire skilled workers from outside the European Economic Area (EEA) & Switzerland. This is applicable for both temporary and permanent positions.

Once an employer is granted a sponsor licence, they can issue a Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) to the foreign worker they wish to hire. The worker can then use the CoS as part of their application for a relevant UK work visa, such as the Skilled Worker visa, depending on the visa category and the job's requirements.

Immigration and visa policies can change over time, so it's recommended to consult with an immigration solicitor for up-to-date information and requirements regarding sponsor licences and work visas in the UK.

Do you need legal advice or assistance with your sponsorship licence application? Contact our sponsorship licence solicitors in London at 0203 417 3700.

Page Contents

  1. What is a sponsorship licence UK?
  2. What are the different types of sponsorship licences for employers?
  3. What are the requirements for a sponsorship licence?
  4. How to apply for a sponsor licence?
  5. How long does the sponsor licence application process take?
  6. How much does a UK sponsor licence cost?
  7. Immigration solicitors for sponsor licence application
  8. Need Legal Advice & Assistance?

What is a sponsorship licence UK?

A sponsor licence in the UK refers to the permission granted to an employer or organisation by the Home Office to sponsor skilled workers from outside the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland to work in the United Kingdom. This licence is a crucial requirement for employers who wish to hire non-EEA or non-Swiss nationals under certain work visa categories.

What are the different types of sponsorship licences for employers?

There are two types of sponsor licences available. The licence you need depends on whether the workers you want to fill your jobs are:

  1. Workers’ - for skilled or long-term employment
  2. Temporary workers’ - for specific types of temporary employment

What are the requirements for a sponsorship licence?

To obtain a sponsor licence, employers must meet specific criteria set by the UK government, which include demonstrating the genuineness of their business, adhering to certain employment and immigration law standards, and maintaining proper record-keeping and reporting procedures.

You must meet the following requirements to be eligible to apply for a sponsor licence:

  • You must have a genuine vacancy
  • You need an appropriate HR system to monitor employees
  • You need appropriate people to manage sponsorship in your business
  • You must meet job suitability requirements
  • You must provide supporting documents listed in Appendix A

Above is a general list of requirements. You must meet all other eligibility requirements depending on your circumstances.

How to apply for a sponsor licence?

To obtain a sponsor licence in the UK, you will need to follow these steps:

  1. Review the eligibility criteria
  2. Determine the type of licence you need
  3. Gather the necessary documents
  4. Appoint key personnel
  5. Fill out and submit the sponsor licence application online
  6. Pay the sponsor licence application fee
  7. Wait for a decision

How long does the sponsor licence application process take?

According to Home Office guidance, it can take up to 8 weeks for a sponsor licence application to be processed under the standard service.

You may be able to use the 'pre-licence priority service' when you apply for a sponsor licence to get a faster decision within 10 working days. You'll need to pay £500 in addition to the sponsorship licence application fee.

This service is limited to a small number of applications every working day. Faster decisions are allocated in the order that requests arrive (first come, first served). You'll be told how to ask for a faster decision after you apply.

How much does a UK sponsor licence cost?

The sponsor licence application fee is between £536 - £1,476 depending on the size of your organisation/company and the type of licence you are applying for.

Immigration solicitors for sponsor licence application

Our highly experienced team of business immigration solicitors in Wembley, London will assist you through the process of making a sponsor licence application.

Business immigration solicitors at Wembley Solicitors will:

  • assess your eligibility and advice you about the requirements
  • advise you about who the key personnel should be
  • advise you about how to remain compliant and the employer's duties
  • provide you with a comprehensive checklist of supporting documents
  • help you to choose the correct type of sponsor licence
  • prepare and submit the sponsor licence application online
  • do all the follow-up work on your sponsor licence application until a decision is received from the UKVI.

Contact our immigration solicitors in London on 0203 417 3700 or fill in the enquiry form for legal advice and help with your sponsor licence application.

We provide expert advice, practical assistance, and professional representation to guide you through the application and decision-making process, from start to finish. 

We're authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA), so you know you're in safe hands.

Contact our solicitor today to get legal advice and assistance with your UK immigration matters.

You can call us on 02034173700 or leave your details here for a callback request regarding your legal matter.

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