How do I sponsor a skilled worker in the UK?


How do I sponsor a skilled worker in the UK?

Who can sponsor 'Skilled Workers' in the UK?

If a business wishes to sponsor a Skilled Worker, they must have a valid Skilled Worker Sponsor Licence. Migrant workers cannot sponsor themselves under this route. Migrant workers need a UK Skilled Worker Sponsor to sponsor them.

How can you apply for a 'Skilled Worker Sponsor Licence'?

UK businesses can apply for 'Skilled Worker Sponsor Licence' by completing a simple online application, paying the relevant fee and submitting the supporting evidence which is specified in Appendix A of the 'Skilled Worker Visa Sponsor' guidance.

How much does it cost to apply for a Skilled Worker Sponsor Licence?

Type of license
Fee for small or charitable sponsors
Fee for medium or large sponsors
Worker £536 £1,476
Temporary Worker £536 £536
Worker & Temporary Worker
Add a Worker license to an existing Temporary Worker license No fee £940
Add a Temporary Worker license to an existing Worker license No fee No fee

How long does it takes to get a decision of a Skilled Worker Sponsor Licence?

Most applications are decided with in less than 8 weeks. Businesses may be able to pay £500 more to get a decision within 10 working days.

Who can come to the UK as a Skilled Worker?

The job offered must be skilled to level 3 on the Regulated Qualifications Framework (RQF) for England and Northern Ireland, or the equivalent level in Wales or Scotland. This is equivalent to approximately A-level standard. Advanced level qualifications (A levels) are subject-based qualifications that can lead to higher education, further study, training, or work. One can normally study three or more A levels over two years. This does not mean the worker has to have A-levels or equivalent qualifications, but the work they do must be at that level. This is similar to Class 12th in India or Intermediate studies.

What is a Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS)?

Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) is an electronic document, not a physical document. Each COS has its own unique number which a worker can use to apply for a visa in their local country. When a Skilled Worker Sponsor assigns the certificate to a worker, they must use it to apply for their skilled worker visa within 3 months.

There are 2 types of CoS:

  • Defined COS (previously known as Restricted CoS)
  • Undefined COS (Previously known as Unrestricted CoS)

What is Defined CoS?

If the migrant worker you wish to sponsor will be applying for entry clearance from outside the UK, the skilled worker sponsor must first apply for a defined CoS.

What is Undefined CoS?

If the skilled worker will be applying for permission to stay from within the UK, Skilled worker sponsor must assign them an ‘undefined’ CoS.

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