Sponsor Licence Management

Once your organisation has a sponsor licence, you are also vested with numerous sponsor ongoing duties and responsibilities.

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Sponsor Licence Management

Once your organisation has a sponsor licence, you are also vested with numerous sponsor ongoing duties and responsibilities. The objectives of these duties include preventing abuse of the immigration laws and sponsorship arrangements, capturing early any patterns of behaviour that may cause concern, addressing weaknesses in the process which cause those patterns and monitoring compliance with the immigration rules and wider UK law. 

Your responsibilities as a sponsor start on the day you are granted your licence and will continue until you surrender your licence or it’s revoked. 

Even experienced HR teams can find it challenging to keep up with the latest changes in UK immigration law, policy and best practices as this is resource intensive and can often fall down the priority list against demands from core operational objectives. Below are some of the key pointers to note and comply with your duties.

Sponsor Duties Overview

Below are broadly your duties as a licenced sponsor:

  • Reporting Duties
  • Record keeping duties
  • Compliance with immigration laws
  • Compliance withal applicable UK Laws
  • Not engaging in behaviour or actions that are not conducive to the public good

If you fail to comply with your sponsor duties, the home office may initiate actions against you, which can include any of the following sanctions:

  • Reducing your CoS allocation or setting it to zero
  • Downgrading your licence rating
  • Revoking your licence
  • Reporting you to the police or other relevant authorities.

Home office compliance visits or digital inspections are common. Licence holders should also be aware that at the licence renewal stage the Home Office examines the HR Controls, Processes and records to ensure compliance throughout licence validity and ascertain if the organisation can maintain compliance into the next licence period. 

Our team has extensive experience in assisting small and large businesses to ensure they fully comply with all the home office requirements and adhere to their sponsor duties. Feel free to get in touch to understand how we can help you.

Reporting & Record Keeping Duties

Your organisational level 1 & level 2 users are given access to the SMS (Sponsor Management System). The authorising officer is accountable for adherence to all reporting, record keeping and other sponsor duties vested on you. Your organisation can use the SMS to create and assign the Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) to prospective employees, report sponsored employee changes, withdraw or vary sponsorships issued and report organisation changes to the Home Office.

You must report certain information or events to the home office within specific timelines based on the occasion. Some of the events that need to be reported within 10 working days are delayed work start of the worker; worker absent without authorisation for more than 10 working days, end or termination of contracts and any significant changes to the employment. 

Some significant changes to your organisation which must be reported within 20 working days include changes to the name or branch names, selling all or part of your business, any mergers or take overs or other substantial changes to the nature of business. 

These and other sponsor duties are subject to change from time to time and you as a sponsor must be up to date with any regulatory or requirement changes. 

We’ve built corporate immigration retainer packages to assist your organisation with adhering to the ongoing sponsor duties. Check out the below table and give us a call so we can help you adhere with the sponsor duties.

Compliance Visits

In order to ensure that the sponsor is complying with their duties and are upholding the trust placed on them, the Home Office may undertake compliance visit at any point. This can be pre-licence before they grant or post-licence after they grant. 

They may undertake a physical inspection of your premises; however, they are now more commonly undertaking digital compliance checks through online meetings. They may also undertake phone or email audits with tight timeframes for response. 

They may also audit through inter-government sharing of intelligence like with HMRC. As a sponsor all your processes, practices and systems must be audit ready at all times. 

We can assist your organisation with achieving this and always being audit ready. We can help you respond to any audit questions or for any physical/digital inspection.


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Premium Retainer Package

Outsource all SMS management activities completely with professional support using our corporate immigration retainer.
£ 250+VAT
per month
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