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Tier 2 sponsorship licence renewal
Under the Tier 2 Points Based Systems, employers in the UK are required to have a sponsorship licence in order to employ workers who are non-EEA nationals. The sponsorship licence is issued by the Home Office and it is generally valid for four years following which the sponsorship licence must be renewed if the company intends to continue employing non-EEA nationals.
How do I renew my sponsorship licence?
To obtain an extension for the sponsorship licence, employers must submit a sponsorship licence renewal application to the Sponsor Management System which is an online system. Companies are permitted to submit an application at least three months prior to the expiry of the licence. As the process is done online, companies are required to select a Level 1 User to settle the compulsory fee, complete the sponsor declaration following which the nominated user can request the renewal.
The Home Office are constantly updating the requirements that sponsors must meet along with an extensive list of duties that all sponsors must comply with. It is therefore the responsibility of sponsors/companies to ensure that they are complying with any updated requirements.
It is important to note that the sponsorship licence is not renewed automatically once the application is submitted online. The sponsorship licence is extended temporarily whilst the Home Office conduct their relevant checks. These checks may require further documents from the Sponsor which must all be provided to the Home Office within five working days. Failing to provide the requested documents within the deadline could have serious consequences for a business and their employees and as such it is imperative that sponsors have prompt guidance and advice when collating the requested information.
As part of the checks undertaken by the Home Office, the Home Office can visit a sponsor/business to ensure that they are complying with their requirements and duties as a sponsor. During this visit, the Home Office can request to see any documents deemed relevant and as such it is extremely important that sponsors follow the requirements in relation to record keeping and compliance checks at all times as these visits can be unannounced.
How long will the renewal process take?
The renewal process will take a while as the Home Office will need to conduct thorough checks on all applications in addition to also visiting sponsors as mentioned above. It is helpful to have solicitors dealing with the matter as we can remain in constant contact with the Home Office and provide clients with updates regularly.
How we can assist with the renewal process
We have a dedicated team who specifically deal with business immigration matters as their specialty. We provide a full package to employers who wish to make a sponsorship licence renewal application. The main services that we can provide includes:
- Advising Sponsors on the correct sponsorship application to make
- Concisely explain the guidance published by the Home Office
- Assist sponsors in nominating a Level 1 user in accordance with Home Office guidance
- Provide detailed advice and guidance on the supporting documents required and assistance in gathering the documents in the correct format within the tight deadline
- Undertake a thorough audit on HR systems and processes to ensure that these processes are in line with the Home Office guidance
Our team of specialist Immigration solicitors possess in-depth knowledge and understanding on how business immigration operates in the UK. We are therefore best equipped in ensuring that your application for the renewal of a sponsorship licence is successful without causing disruption to your daily business activities. We have dealt with many large companies in the UK and have been successful at obtaining, not only the initial Licence, but also all renewals.