Sponsor Licence – Skilled Workers

In order to employ skilled workers from outside the EU, UK employers must first apply to UK Visas and Immigration for a sponsor licence. Workers must have a job offer from an employer that has made a successful sponsor licence application before they can apply to come to, or remain in, the UK for work.

What is the Skilled Workers Sponsor Licence? 

The Skilled Workers Sponsor Licence allows a UK Employer to be registered on the UKVI’s Register of Licenced Sponsors to be able to employ skilled workers from outside the EU to work in the UK. 

What are the eligibility requirements for a Skilled Workers Sponsor Licence? 

In order to obtain a sponsor licence, you will need to satisfy UK Visas and Immigration that:

  • Your company is a genuine organisation operating lawfully in the UK;
  • You are honest, dependable and reliable;
  • You are capable of carrying out your sponsor duties and evidencing your compliance in an appropriate timeframe and manner;
  • You can offer genuine employment that meets the appropriate skill level and appropriate rates of pay.

In order to establish that you are a genuine organisation operating lawfully in the UK, you will need to submit a number of company-related documents. The exact documents will depend upon the type of organisation that you are and the tiers that you wish to sponsor migrants under.

UKVI will assess whether you are honest, dependable and reliable by looking at your history and background, as well as that of the key personnel named on your application and any people involved in the day to day running of your business.

UKVI will examine your current human resources and recruitment practices in order to make sure that you are able to fulfil your sponsor duties.

Under the genuineness test, UKVI will look at the role that you are seeking to recruit foreign nationals for, and the extent to which this role fits within your organisation as a whole.

The exact requirements you will need to satisfy will vary depending on your circumstances. You may want to speak to our expert immigration lawyers for legal advice.

What else do you need to know about the Skilled Workers Sponsor Licence? 

You can apply for a sponsor licence online. At the end of the application, you will need to print out the submission sheet and post it to UK Visas and Immigration, along with the correct supporting documents.

Most sponsor licence applications are processed within 8 weeks.

As part of the sponsor licence application process, UK Visas and Immigration may visit your business premises in order to check if it satisfies the sponsorship criteria.

It is important that your sponsor licence application is prepared carefully, as there is no right of appeal if your licence application is refused. If you are refused a licence, you may not be able to apply again for up to five years, depending on the circumstances.

Once your application has been approved, you will be granted an A-rated sponsor licence, following which you can start assigning Certificates of Sponsorship to migrants who wish to work for you, and you will be listed under the register of sponsors.

You will be given access to the Sponsor Management System (SMS). This is an online portal where you can manage your licence. You must also use the system to report certain events, such as if a migrant fails to report to work.

A sponsor licence is valid for 4 years, after which you will need to apply for a Sponsor Licence Renewal.

If you fail to meet your sponsorship responsibilities, you could lose your licence.

Making a Skilled Workers Sponsor Licence application with OneLaw Chambers

At OneLaw Chambers, our immigration solicitors and barristers regularly assist with Skilled Workers Sponsor Licence applications in order for applicants to remain and settle in the UK. We have assisted many foreign national applicants to prepare and submit successful Skilled Workers Sponsor Licence applications and we have represented clients from all over the world.

Whether you require expert immigration advice on the requirements of the Immigration Rules, an independent immigration assessment of your prospects of qualifying for a Skilled Workers Sponsor Licence or professional immigration representation with preparing your Skilled Workers Sponsor Licence immigration application, our immigration solicitors and barristers can help you.

We are committed to ensuring that our immigration solicitors and barristers prepare every immigration visa application with utmost quality and skill so that successful outcome is achieved every time. Our immigration solicitors and barristers operate in a friendly and cooperative manner to provide our clients with the best client care and service during the entire immigration application process.

To discuss your Skilled Workers Sponsor Licence application with one our immigration solicitors and barristers, please contact our Immigration lawyers on 0207 489 2044 / 0208 616 1819 or complete our enquiry form with your details.


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