Business Sponsorship Licence

Business Sponsorship Licence

Who needs a Business Sponsorship Licence?

You will need a sponsorship licence to employ someone from outside the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland to work for you in the UK, including paid and unpaid work.

Tier 2 and Tier 5 Sponsorship Licence

The licence you need depends on whether the workers you want to fill your jobs are:

  • Tier 2 – skilled workers with long-term job offers
  • Tier 5 – skilled temporary workers

You can apply for a licence covering either tier or both.

What are the eligibility requirements for a Business Sponsorship Licence?

To get a licence, you cannot have:

  • any unspent criminal convictions for immigration offences or certain other crimes
  • any history of failing to carry out your sponsorship duties, like monitoring your sponsored employees

UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) will review your application and may visit your business to make sure that you are trustworthy and capable to carry out your duties.

What is a Sponsorship Management System?

When you apply for a sponsorship licence, you need to appoint people within your business to manage the sponsorship process. The main tool to use is the sponsorship management system (SMS). The roles in the SMS includes:

  • authorising officer – a senior and competent person responsible for the actions of staff and representatives who manage the system
  • key contact – your main point of contact with UKVI
  • level 1 user – responsible for all day-to-day management of your licence.


To give your case the best chance of success, get in touch

To give your visa the best chance of success, and to reduce your stress, please contact our immigration experts.

If you wish to speak directly with one of our immigration specialists to get advice about business and personal immigration, or education in the UK and other visa issues, then please contact our Glasgow Head Office on Phone T: +44 (0)141 212 3355 or request a call back by completing the Online Form. You can also email us at More information can be found from Contact Us.  

*Disclaimer: The above information is for general reference only. Specialist legal advice should be sought.