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ILES International > Our Services > Tier 2 Employer Sponsor Licence

Tier 2 Employer Sponsor Licence

UK Visa Sponsorship for Employers

A Tier 2 employer sponsor licence is the chief mechanism in providing sponsorship for skilled migrants to work in the UK. The Employer Sponsor Licence demonstrates your organisational ability to qualify and employ international candidates in accordance with regulation designed to protect the UK resident labour market and the value of skilled labour in the United Kingdom.

Employing a specific skill-set or range of experience can be vital to the growth of any business. Whether you are part of an international organisation wishing to relocate staff to the UK or you are a UK business that can’t find the right UK / EU resident applicants. The Tier 2 Employer Sponsor Licence allows you to acquire people from outside the Single Market of Europe.


The Tier 2  Licence allows you to sponsor individuals under the following categories:

  • Tier 2 (General) Skilled Worker
  • Intra Company Transfer
  • Minister of Religion
  • Sportsperson

Tier 2 Employer Sponsor Licence Application Process

Stage 1 – Resident Labour Market Test

You may be required to undertake a Resident Labour Market Test (RLMT) prior to applying for your Licence. This demonstrates to the Home Office that you have a need for skills which you cannot fulfil via the UK Resident Labour Market.

Stage 2 – Online application process and consideration.

  • You can apply for your sponsor licence via the online Sponsor Management System portal.
  • Submit the required documentation for assessment.
  • Pay the Sponsor Licence fee
  • The Home Office processing time for a Tier 2 Employer Sponsor Licence is 8 – 10 weeks.
  •  It is likely you will receive a pre-licence audit from an Home Office Compliance Officer. They will visit your offices to ensure you have the right processes in place to maintain your sponsorship duties. This usually takes place 6 – 8 weeks into the application.

Stage 3 – After Licence approval:

  • After you have been appointed tier 2 visa sponsors it is a requirement that you appoint key personnel to operate the Sponsor Management System and carry out the compliance duties associated to the Employer Sponsor Licence.
  • Access the Sponsor Management System (SMS) and assign a Certificate of Sponsorship (COS).
  • Pay the Immigration Skills Charge.
  • The applicant must then make their application for a company sponsorship visa.

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