Tier 2 Sponsor Licence Renewal Requires Careful Timing
Although the procedure for Tier 2 sponsor licence renewal is relatively transparent and straightforward – licences must be renewed every four years – it is still the case that a number of organisations suffer the damaging effects of having their licence renewal applications rejected. In 2015 as many as 150 different companies had their licences either revoked or suspended while renewing; in 2014 the figure was 125. Additionally, a number of licences are rated down each year (25 and 20 respectively in 2015 and 2014).
It goes without saying that for any organisation that actively employs staff on the basis of a Tier 2 sponsorship the consequences of losing their licence – or even having it temporarily suspended may be of the utmost gravity. Affected staff will be obliged to cease working and may be required to leave the UK – with all the personal upheaval that such a sudden injunction involves. Many businesses struggle to survive the loss of their licence. This applies to state bodies such as the NHS just as much as any private organisation. A full breakdown of sponsor responsibilities is available here.
Six Week Window
Fulfill all Tier 2 licence renewal requirements with in six weeks of expiration of current licence. Any renewal application must be made within three months of the expiry date of the existing licence, however the processing time of renewal applications may be as much as six weeks, so there is a clear six week ‘window’ within which renewals should be posted i.e. within three months of the licence expiry date but more than a month and a half ahead of that date. Getting this wrong may lead to serious issues if the application does not go smoothly.
Not only are the effects of a negative decision by UKVI (previously knowns as UKBA) damaging, the costs associated with the application procedure itself are not to be underestimated. The Government fee for a premium licence renewal is £25,000, and this is not refundable if the application is rejected. The requirements for organisations approaching the renewal date of their Tier 2 sponsorship licence are clear for all to see – as are the pitfalls of getting it wrong.
It is highly advisable to employ professional advice in order to ensure a smooth and successful Tier 2 Sponsor Licence renewal. The utmost care should also be taken with regard to the timing of the application.
YDVISAS specialise in all visa categories and are specialist immigration lawyers in the UK. Please contact the expert team at YDVISAS, should you need any professional help with your visa application.