UK Sponsor Licenses Application Process | UK Legal Advice 

UK sponsor license

The UK Sponsor License is a pivotal framework that empowers UK-based organisations to employ skilled workers from overseas or within the UK. With the post-Brexit immigration rules reshaping the employment landscape, understanding the intricacies of the UK Sponsor License has become indispensable for employers aspiring to tap into the global talent pool.

Key Takeaways Description
Purpose Enables UK-based employers to hire skilled workers from overseas or within the UK. 
Application Process Involves a detailed application, submission of required documents, and payment of fees.
Ratings A-rating signifies compliance with sponsor duties; a B-rating requires action to regain an A-rating. 
Costs vary based on the size and type of the organisation, reviewed annually by the Home Office.

Understanding the UK Sponsor License

The UK Sponsor License serves as a gateway for UK employers to hire proficient individuals from around the globe. This license is not merely a regulatory formality but a testament to the employer’s adherence to the immigration rules and employment standards set by the UK government. The essence of the Sponsor License revolves around fostering a balanced employment ecosystem wherein both domestic and foreign workers can thrive.

What Are the Purpose & Benefits Of UK Sponsorship Licenses?

The primary aim of the UK Sponsor License is to facilitate the employment of skilled workers from outside the UK, thereby enriching the local workforce with global expertise. Obtaining a Sponsor License is a strategic move for employers looking to enhance their operations and competitiveness on a global scale. The benefits extend beyond merely filling job vacancies; it’s about fostering a culture of diversity and inclusivity.

Eligibility Criteria for UK Sponsor Licensessponsor license infographic

For an organisation to be eligible for a Sponsor License, it must have a tangible presence in the UK and operate lawfully. This implies having a trading presence and registering with the necessary statutory bodies.

The Home Office also mandates that the employment offered is genuine and that the salary aligns with the prescribed guidelines. Understanding the eligibility criteria is crucial to navigate the application process seamlessly.

In this section, we aim to have provided a bird’s-eye view of the UK Sponsor License, laying a solid foundation for delving deeper into the application process, ratings, and cost implications in the subsequent sections.

UK Sponsor License Application Process

The process of acquiring a UK Sponsor License is meticulous, requiring a comprehensive understanding of the steps involved.

Below is a detailed walkthrough of the application process:

  • Preparation:

    • Ensure your organisation meets the eligibility criteria.
    • Gather necessary documents, including proof of operating lawfully in the UK.
  • Application Submission:

    • Instruct Primus Solicitors, so we can properly fill out your sponsorship application form.
    • Submit the required documents.
    • Pay the application fee, which varies based on the size of your organisation.
  • Home Office Review:

    • The Home Office reviews the application, which may include visiting your business premises.
  • Approval and Rating:

    • Upon approval, you’ll receive an A or B rating, allowing you to start sponsoring foreign workers.
  • Sponsor Management System (SMS):

    • Utilise the Sponsor Management System to manage your sponsored employees and comply with your sponsor duties.

The application process, although rigorous, is a crucial step towards expanding your workforce and enhancing your organisation’s global competitiveness.

Sponsor License Ratings – What Do They Mean?

The UK Home Office awards two types of ratings to sponsors: A-rating and B-rating.

  • A-rating: This is the highest rating awarded to organisations that demonstrate full compliance with the duties and responsibilities of a sponsor.
  • B-rating: Organisations that fall short of the necessary compliance are awarded a B-rating, requiring them to follow a time-bound action plan to upgrade to an A-rating.

The rating system is designed to ensure that organisations adhere to UK immigration and employment laws, maintaining a high standard of practice.

Sponsor License Cost Fees & Implications

The financial aspect of obtaining and maintaining a UK Sponsor License is a critical consideration for organisations. Here’s a breakdown of the costs involved:

  • Application Fee: Varies based on the size and type of your organisation.
  • Immigration Skills Charge: Payable for each foreign worker hired.
  • Other Costs: This may include legal consultation, HR system upgrades to comply with sponsorship duties and other associated costs.

Learn more about the Skilled Worker Sponsor Licence here .


Navigating the UK Sponsor License process can be complex, yet it’s a significant step for organisations aiming to enhance their global workforce. With a thorough understanding of the process, eligibility criteria, and cost implications, organisations can effectively manoeuvre through the application process. For personalised guidance and assistance, contact our team of experienced immigration lawyers.