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UK Sponsor Licence Solicitors

The application for a Sponsor Licence requires that an entity looking to recruit from outside of the United Kingdom- have the necessary infrastructure in place. Once there is confidence that the right infrastructure is in place, the next step would be to analyse the Home Office rules to ensure that the strict requirements are met by the said entity. The final step would be to submit the online application to the Home Office for the Sponsorship Licence.


Once the Home Office receive your application for a Sponsorship Licence, all your supporting documents will be reviewed. Depending on the entity’s risk status the Home Office may decide to carry out personal visit to the Business address to ensure that the Business is legitimate, and capable of fulfilling its’ role as a Sponsorship Licence holder.

If your Sponsor Licence application is successful, the entity will be placed on the List of Registered Sponsors. The Business will be given a licence rating and will be permitted to assign Certificates of Sponsorship (COS) to qualifying candidates, enabling them to make their visa application to the Home Office to enter the UK.


White Horse Solicitors & Notary Public has exceptional experience in acting for entities wishing to make applications for Sponsor Licences. We will mentor you through the application process at ease to make sure that you correctly meet the demanding rules set up by the Home Office to allow you to employ the high-quality staff you wish to employ.


Why choose us for your Sponsorship Licence Application?


  • We can advise on the appropriate type of Sponsorship Licence Application to be submitted including eligibility;
  • We can assist in drafting persuasive submissions to be submitted to the Home Office to mitigate the risk of refusal.
  • We can assist in advising you on the correct documentation which will be required for submission as part of the Application;
  • We can advise you on the rules of compliance & licence management duties your Business will need to meet in order to be accepted by the Home Office to be a suitable employer for a Migrant Worker;
  • Once a Sponsorship Licence is granted by the Home Office, we can advise on requirements for prospective Migrant which will be required to be met in order for a Certificate of Sponsorship to be assigned;
  • We can assist the prospective Migrant with his/her application to enter the UK


What is the process of obtaining a Sponsorship Licence?


  1. Your Business must be eligible.


To be granted a Sponsorship Licence, you cannot have unspent criminal convictions for immigration offences or certain other crimes, such as fraud or money laundering. There must also be no history of failing to carry out your sponsorship duties. You must not have had a sponsor licence revoked in the last 12 months. You will also need appropriate systems in place to monitor sponsored employees.


  1. Depending on the type of worker you wish to sponsor- you will need to choose which type of Sponsorship Licence you wish to apply for.


There are two types of licence, depending on whether it is a long-term or temporary position.

Worker License:

A ‘Worker’ licence is for skilled workers who you want to employ long-term or permanently.

  • Skilled Worker – the role must meet the job suitability requirements
  • Intra-company visas – this includes Intra-company Transfer and Intra-company Graduate Trainee, for multinational companies which need to transfer established employees or graduate trainees to the UK
  • Minister of Religion – for people coming to work for a religious organisation
  • Sportsperson – for elite sportspeople and coaches.

Temporary Worker License:

A ‘Temporary Worker’ licence will let you employ skilled people on a temporary basis.


  • Seasonal Worker – for those coming to the UK for up to 6 months to do farm work
  • Religious Worker (2 years)
  • Charity Worker (up to 1 year)
  • Creative or Sporting Worker – to work as a high-level sportsperson (up to 1 year), entertainer or artist (up to 2 years)
  • Government Authorised Exchange Worker – work experience (1 year), research projects or training, for example practical medical or scientific training (2 years) to enable a short-term exchange of knowledge
  • International Agreement Worker – where the worker is coming to do a job which is covered by international law, for example employees of overseas governments.

3. Determine which individuals will manage the Sponsorship within your Business.


You need to appoint individuals within your Business to manage the sponsorship process when you apply for a licence by way of the Sponsorship Management System (SMS).


The roles which you must decide on are as follows:


  • Authorising officer – This should be a senior and experienced person responsible for the actions of staff and representatives who use the SMS.
  • Key contact – This will be your main point of contact with Home Office.
  • Level 1 User – This individual will be responsible for all day-to-day management of your licence using the SMS.
  • Level 2 User – This is an elective SMS user that can be appointed once you have your licence if this is required by your Business. A Level 2 user access is more restricted access than a Level 1 User’s.


4. Apply online and pay the fee


A Sponsor Licence if approved, is granted for a period of 4 years.

Most applications are processed in less than 8 weeks.

You may be able to pay a premium fee of £500 to get a decision within 10 working days. Home Office will let you know if this is possible after the application has been submitted.


Once the entity has been registered as a Licenced Sponsor, a Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) should be obtained. A Certificate of Sponsorship is a reference number assigned to a foreign national from their UK sponsor, enabling them to make an application for a visa to work in the UK. You as the Migrant’s worker’s proposed employer- must then assign a Certificate of Sponsorship to each Migrant worker you employ. Each certificate has its own number which the Migrant worker can use to apply for a visa.


Contact White Horse Solicitors & Notary Public for expert advice by experienced professionals on all areas of Immigration law. The many conditions and immigration requirements that must be met are handled by White Horse Solicitors and Notary Public with excellent professionalism, reliable conduct and integrity. We will ensure that our advice focuses on your personal circumstances and will always aim to achieve brilliant results for our clients.


The Sponsor Licence application process is one of the most complex areas of Immigration Law. We recommend getting in contact with us on 020 7118 1778 for our specialist and professional advice on such an application before any action is taken.

The information contained on this page is sourced from UK Visas and Immigration and is subject to change. White Horse Solicitors & Notary Public makes every effort to keep this information current, however prices and information cannot be guaranteed and should always be checked on

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