uk visa enquiry

Apply for Sponsorship License

If you are a UK-based organization looking to employ overseas skilled workers you need to sponsor them. In order to sponsor them you need to have a sponsorship license. You can apply for a UK sponsorship license through the UK Visa and Immigration (UKVI) which is a division of the Home Office responsible for UK immigration. The Home Office will grant you a sponsorship license only if you meet the necessary
There are different kinds of sponsor licence, however, the most popular one is for the skilled workers. Only UK-based organizations can employ foreign workers by sponsoring them. No individuals can get a sponsorship license but an exception applies if the individual is a sole trader who wants to sponsor a skilled worker within their business.

Types of Sponsorship License

There are 2 types of employment for which foreign nationals can be hired by UK-based organizations. First is ‘workers’ including skilled or long-term employment for the following visas:
 Skilled worker visa
 GBM or senior or specialist worker visa
 Ministry of Religion
 International sportsperson   
and the second is ‘temporary workers’ for short periods of employment such as religious workers, scale-up workers, government-authorized exchange, seasonal workers, etc.

Eligibility for UK Sponsorship License

You need to meet the following eligibility requirements to apply for a sponsorship license:

  • You must have a UK presence and be operating or trading lawfully in the UK.
  • You must be able to satisfy the Home Office that you are offering genuine employment in a skilled occupation.
  • You must satisfy the Home Office that you will comply with the minimum wage and working time regulations.
  • You must show that you are going to meet all the duties associated with a sponsor license holder.
  • You cannot have unspent criminal convictions for immigration offenses or certain other crimes such as fraud or money laundering.
  • You must not have a sponsor license revoked in the last 12 months.
  • You need to put appropriate systems in place to monitor sponsored workers and people to manage sponsorship in your business.

Supporting Documents

The supporting documents depend on the type of organization applying for the sponsor licence. Generally, you need any 4 documents from the following documents when applying for a sponsor license:

  • Most recent financial year accounts statement showing your business is genuine.
  • Copies of goods or services contracts covering at least a 12-month period from the date of application.
  • Evidence that you have a current corporate bank account with the UK-registered Financial Conduct Authority and Prudential Regulation Authority in the UK.
  • A valid VAT registration certificate.
  • Franchise agreement, if applicable.
  • Evidence of registration.
  • Endorsement from a governing body, if applicable.
  • For religious worker sponsorship details of parent organization, a hierarchy chart if applicable, adult congregation size, clergy count you currently employ, meeting places, and worship schedule for Religious Worker Sponsorship if applicable.
  • Proof of connection through ownership, control, or joint venture.
  • Documentation supporting your graduate training program.
  • Documents showing your business presence in the UK.
  • Proof of overseas trading activities.
  • Documentation of your UK expansion plan.

You may have to provide more documents depending on specific needs, such as an organizational hierarchy chart, employer’s liability insurance certificate, evidence of listing, self-assessment tax return, company tax return, or a premises alcohol-serving license.

Sponsor License Application Fees

Depending on whether you are a small or charitable sponsor or a medium or large sponsor you need to pay different sponsor license application fees. You can be classified as small or charitable sponsors if your organization meets at least 2 of the following:

  • Your organization’s annual turnover is £10.2 million or less
  • Your organization’s total assets are £5.1 million or less
  • Your organization has 50 employees or less

You need to pay the sponsor license application fee as the following:

Applying for a worker's license

  • For small or charitable sponsors - £536
  • For medium or large sponsors - £1,476

Applying for a temporary worker license

  • For small or charitable sponsors - £536
  • For medium or large sponsors - £536

Applying for worker and temporary worker license

  • For small and charitable sponsors - £536
  • For medium and large sponsors- £1,476

Applying to add a worker license to an existing temporary worker license

  • For small and charitable sponsors – No cost
  • For medium and large sponsors - £940

Applying to add a temporary worker license to an existing worker license

  • For small and charitable sponsors – No cost
  • For medium and large sponsors – No cost

Should you need assistance and advice in connection with applying for a UK sponsor licence, please consult one of our lawyers at Visa and Migration Ltd on 02034111261 or email


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Visa and Migration is a private OISC regulated company (F201500999) and is not an official Government body. If you would like to prepare and submit your UK immigration application yourself you can do so by visiting the UKVI website.