To employ any worker from outside of the EEA in the UK, a business will be required to make a Sponsorship License application. This includes those employing temporary workers for unpaid or charity work.

Before beginning a Sponsorship License application, a business must make sure they meet all the conditions. Staff must then be assigned the necessary roles to manage sponsorship. Once this is done, the application can be made online or by post.

How can IAS help?

The lawyers at IAS can help with every stage of a Tier 5 or Tier 2 Sponsor application. Our packages ensure that the applying business meets all the expectations set out by the Home Office. We also provide advice and assistance in choosing the right Sponsor License for the business’ needs.

This service will prepare businesses for the ‘Genuine Business Test’ and the visit from the Home Office. Our advisers can inform staff of how to operate the Sponsorship Management System before they begin their application. Make an inquiry online or get in touch on +1844 290 6312 today for more information and advice for a UK-based business interested in employing overseas workers.


What are the Sponsor License application requirements?

To be eligible to begin a Tier 5 or Tier 2 Sponsor Application, a business must:

  • Prove that they are a legitimate business;
  • Prove a non-EEA skilled worker is required for this specific job;
  • Ensure their sponsored employee passes a personality test;
  • Not have a history of failing to meet sponsorship duties;
  • Not have any unspent criminal convictions;
  • Pay an appropriate salary rate to their migrant employees.

The Home Office will expect proof that the business is genuine and has a legitimate need for an overseas worker. They may intend to validate this through a visit to the company during the application process.

What happens if my Sponsor License application is successful?

If the application is successful, the UK business will receive an A grade license rating from the Home Office. They will then be placed on the UK Sponsorship License Register.

This will mean that they will be able to apply for Certificates of Sponsorship for any non-EEA workers they intend to bring to the UK for a suitable job. They can do this via the Sponsorship Management System (SMS).

From the date of issue, the Sponsor License is valid for four years. If companies do not follow the strict duties outlined by the Home Office, they face a number of penalties. These include Sponsor License suspension, Sponsor License revocation or a Civil Penalty.

Why was my Sponsor License application rejected?

The Home Office may refuse Tier 5 or Tier 2 Sponsor applications and applications for renewal for reasons. The most common include:

  • The business’ failure to pass a Compliance Audit;
  • Failure to provide sufficient documents for sponsored migrant workers;
  • Not informing the Home Office of significant changes in the running of the business;
  • Not responding to Home Office communications in time;
  • Failure to pass a ‘genuineness test’;
  • Failure to comply with Home Office security standards.

What is the Sponsor License application cooling off period?

If your Sponsor License application is refused you will not be allowed to reapply for another six months. This period is known as a Sponsor License cooling off period.

If you make a Tier 2 Sponsor application before this time has passed, it is likely that it will be rejected and you will lose your application fee.

Which workers can I sponsor?

A Sponsor License will be needed to employ anyone from outside of the EEA moving to the UK under a:

  • Tier 2 Work Visa


  • Tier 5 Temporary Work Visa

Depending on the type of worker required, the relevant Sponsorship License application will need to be made.

The Tier 2 Work Visa also includes those applying as ministers of religion or sportspeople.

For intra-company transfers, the UK sponsor has a Sponsor License before an employee can be transferred.

For those entering on a Tier 1 Visa, such as the Exceptional Talent Visa, no Sponsor License will be required.

Please note that the Tier 3 Unskilled Worker Visa has been suspended. UK-based businesses cannot apply to sponsor non-EEA nationals for unskilled labor.

What services does IAS offer?

The lawyers at IAS are some of the best immigration lawyers in the UK. They have an extensive knowledge of Sponsorship License applications and business law. Whether making a Tier 5 or Tier 2 sponsor application, IAS will ensure the chances of success for any business are maximized.

We will:

  • Ensure that the business is eligible to obtain a Sponsor License;
  • Advise on sourcing the required HR documents and employment records;
  • Inform on time frames and ensure they are met;
  • Provide advice and support on the Resident Labour Market Test;
  • Maintain contact with the Home Office on behalf of the business;
  • Prepare the business for Home Office visits;
  • Ensure all practices are compliant with expectations;
  • Complete all application forms to the highest standard.

More information for Tier 2 employees on our services.

Our tailor-made Sponsorship License Application Package includes all these services. We also offer Immigration Consultancy, Immigration Audits, and training for HR departments. Contact us today on +1844 290 6312 or use our online contact form for more information or advice for a UK-based company.

Our Sponsorship Licence Packages

Advice Package

Comprehensive immigration advice tailored to you, with written confirmation


Application Package

Full assistance throughout your entire application process


Fast Track Package

A premium service which allows your application to take priority position in your lawyer's workload


Appeal Package

Full representation through your appeal, including physical representation if your case is heard by a tribunal


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