If you are an employer hoping to employ a worker from outside the European Economic Area (EEA), you will need a sponsorship licence to demonstrate that your employee has a genuine job in the UK. A sponsor licence also shows that you, as the employer, accept the associated responsibilities of sponsorship.
The UK’s immigration rules place heavy demands on employers who want to bring skilled workers from overseas therefore having the support of an experienced team of business immigration lawyers can be vital in ensuring that your application is successful. At The Sethi Partnership Solicitors, we have a proven track record in helping employers across a broad range of sectors to successfully negotiate this process. Speak to a member of our team today to find out how we can help.
We can also advise on occupations listed on the shortage occupation lists.
Licences are granted for four years, therefore during the application process you will need to be clear about your recruitment needs so that your licence provides appropriate cover for its duration. As part of your application, you will be required to specify what type of workers you are aiming to recruit. This will be either:
- Tier 2 workers – skilled workers with offers of long-term employment
- Tier 5 workers – skilled workers employed on a temporary basis
Tier 2 Visas are the primary route for skilled workers to enter the UK, enabling individuals to undertake long-term employment or transfer to a UK company from one based overseas. There are a range of Tier 2 Visas, and depending on the type some can lead to settlement
- General Workers Visas
- Intra-Company Visas
- Sportsperson Visas
- Minister of Religion Visas
Employers must hold a sponsorship licence, in addition to applicants satisfying immigration criteria, English language and maintenance requirements.
Tier 5 Visas enable individuals from outside the EEA to live and work in the UK for up to 12 or 24 months. They cover a range of different types of employment that satisfy cultural, charitable, religious or international objectives. Tier 5 Visas include:
- Charity worker Visas
- Creative and Sporting Visas
- Governmental Authorised Exchange Visas
- International Agreement Visas
- Religious Worker Visas
As an employer, you will have to provide a certificate of sponsorship, including information about the role that your employee will be performing.
Educational institutions hoping to enrol students from overseas are required to hold a Tier 4 sponsor licence. This enables holders to sponsor international students to study full time at their institution but also places specific responsibilities on those institutions in respect of their prospective students. This includes ensuring that students are eligible to apply to study in the UK and demonstrating that the institution genuinely wishes to teach them. The immigration lawyers at The Sethi Partnership Solicitors can provide comprehensive legal advice for educational institutions on the sponsorship licence application process, as well as associated responsibilities and obligations.