Common pitfalls when applying for a sponsor licence

12 Apr 2024, 04 mins ago

A sponsor licence enables you to sponsor foreign workers or students to come and work or study in the UK. This can be a complicated and challenging process, and this blog outlines some of the most common reasons applications get refused or rejected.

Sponsor licence applications are considered on a case-by-case basis and you must fit the eligibility requirements, as well as submit a range of evidence demonstrating your genuineness and reliability.

It is important to be aware of the common pitfalls to avoid the risk of losing valuable potential employees, as well as your business’ time and money.

  1. Documentation errors: You need to ensure that you submit the correct documents in the correct way. Check that they are in the right format, certified if required, and submitted on time.
  2. Failing the ‘genuineness test’: To be eligible for a sponsor licence, you must be a genuine business and the Home Office must be satisfied of this. The positions you wish to fill must also be genuine (not created for an individual). The role must also meet the relevant skills level for the route, along with the salary that meets the visa requirements as applicable.
  3. Selecting unsuitable key personnel: You are required to nominate staff members to take on key roles relating to the licence. There are eligibility requirements for each one, and the Home Office will check the suitability of each designated staff member. It is important to understand the relevant eligibility requirements for each key member of personnel, and plan accordingly before submitting your licence application.
  4. Failing to prepare for the pre-licence visit: To assess whether you are able to meet your sponsor duties, the Home Office may wish to visit your business. This is to verify that key personnel understand their responsibilities and roles.
  5. A history of non-compliance: If you have previously held a sponsor license that was revoked or surrendered, your application may be refused. There may be a ‘cooling-off’ period after an application is refused or revoked, depending on the circumstances. If the relevant period has not passed, your application may be refused.

These are only a handful of points that a sponsor must consider before submitting their licence application. If the relevant requirements aren’t met, your sponsor licence application may be refused. It is worth seeking specialist legal advice to give your business the best chance when applying.

How Gherson can assist

Gherson’s Immigration Team are highly experienced in advising on UK visa matters. If you have any questions arising from this blog, please do not hesitate to contact us for advice, send us an e-mail, or, alternatively, follow us on XFacebookInstagram, or LinkedIn to stay-up-to-date.

The information in this blog is for general information purposes only and does not purport to be comprehensive or to provide legal advice. Whilst every effort is made to ensure the information and law is current as of the date of publication it should be stressed that, due to the passage of time, this does not necessarily reflect the present legal position. Gherson accepts no responsibility for loss which may arise from accessing or reliance on information contained in this blog. For formal advice on the current law please do not hesitate to contact Gherson. Legal advice is only provided pursuant to a written agreement, identified as such, and signed by the client and by or on behalf of Gherson.

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