When an organisation in the UK receives a Sponsor License it authorizes them to recruit foreign nationals outside of EEA area. They can employ skilled workers to work for their organization. However, along with rights, there are some duties or responsibilities upon sponsor license holders as well.
If you are an organisation in the UK applying for a sponsor license, it is better you know the duties that you need to perform because – if you fail to do so – you may face a downgrading in user rating, your license may be suspended or withdrawn, and you are putting the jobs of existing migrant workers at risk.
Duties as a Sponsor Licence Holder
Carry out checks of sponsored workers
You need to carry out the following duties to make sure you are complying completely as an organisation:
- You must check that foreign national employees working in your organisation have the necessary skills, qualifications or professional accreditations to do their jobs, and provide documentary evidence to confirm this,
- You must only offer certificates of sponsorship to people when the job you are offering them is suitable for sponsorship,
- You must inform UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) if workers you sponsored are not complying with the conditions of their visa.
Monitor your employees
When you have done due diligence while assigning a sponsorship license to workers suitable for the job, the next duty you have is to monitor your employees. You must have a strong HR system in place that performs the following functions:
- Monitors the immigration status of your employees
- Checks and maintains relevant documents for each worker, including their passport and right to work information
- Tracks and records attendance of workers
- Updates worker’s contact details
- Reports problems – such as workers not coming to work – to UKVI.
Report changes in your own business
If there are any significant changes in your own business circumstances then you must report these to UKVI within 10 working days. Changes can include the following
- If you stop trading or become insolvent
- If you change the nature of your business substantially
- If you are going through a merger or takeover.
Apart from the above changes, if you are making any changes in business details – like your address, key personnel or allocated roles – then you must report these to UKVI.
You can register a change of circumstances by using the sponsorship management system (SMS).
It can take up to 18 weeks to process your requests. You can also use a priority service to register a change within 5 working days, which costs £200.
Other Sponsor License duties
Aside from the above, there are various other sponsorship licence duties you must perform, including:
- You must be a running a genuine organization
- You must be operating legally in the UK
- If you are sponsoring workers under 18 years of age, you must ensure that these workers receive suitable care arrangements for travelling to the UK, their arrival in UK and their living arrangements in the UK. You must get a letter of consent to the care arrangements from parents of workers under 18.
- You must get a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check for any workers who need it – the Tier 2 route provides a list of individuals that need a police record check before they submit an application.