Lawyer Monthly - March 2022

EXPERT INSIGHT 43 MAR 2022 | WWW.LAWYER-MONTHLY.COM About Global Immigration Law Global Immigration Law is a Londonbased firm that gives legal advice to organisations and individuals on employment-based immigration. Among their areas of expertise are visas, sponsor licenses, administrative review and immigration compliance training. Emel Yilmaz Founder Global Immigration Law Suite 58, Grove Business Centre, 560-568 High Road, Tottenham, London N17 9TA Tel: +44 02080 176398 E: allocations, the government was forced to disqualify doctors and nurses using the post-Brexit immigration system. Now, however, the total time taken to process the sponsor licence has been reduced to almost four weeks. The sponsor routes have also changed in the new latest guidelines to reflect the distinction between ‘workers’ and ‘skilled workers’. Sponsoring a foreign worker under the skilled worker route As mentioned, the ‘workers’ and ‘skilled workers’ routes are vital for companies in the UK that depend on the sponsorship of foreign workers. They are an essential step towards hiring non-British or Irish workers to meet the ongoing shortage of skilled and unskilled labour. For work purposes and working in the United Kingdom, these are the safest and most popular routes for all overseas recruits to follow. The routes are also applicable to follow for non-British employers if they want to hire any citizens from outside the United Kingdom. The requirements of eligibility for nonBritish companies are non-exhaustive and the skilled worker option also provides significant opportunities for employees to settle in the country for a longer period. The post-Brexit points-based immigration system is less restrictive than Tier 2 and meets a lot of obligations. For example, the annual limit for obtaining a Certificate of Sponsorship has now been suspended. Moreover, in the previous system of Tier 2, the RQF Level 6 requirement compelled skilled workers to have at least a graduate level education or possess an A level or RQF Level 3 qualification. There is also further good news for skilled workers in that the former Resident Labour Market Test has also been excluded from the criteria to obtain a licence. However, the minimum wages guaranteed under the previous system were slightly higher; they have now been reduced from £30,000 to £25,600. In addition to these changes, more amendments have been incorporated to the process of securing a sponsor licence. For example, “a length of stay of six years” has been removed as a requirement, in addition to the 12-month cooling-off period. It is possible to switch from intra-company procedures and pathways. On 1 December 2020, the Tier 2 category that had been in use for many years was fully eliminated and replaced by the latest guidelines, allowing skilled workers to enjoy a streamlined process to obtain their sponsorship licences. Existing or current Tier 2 licence possessed by these employees have also been converted and transferred into new licences under the category of ‘Skilled Workers’. How to apply for a licence under the new rules Additional changes to the sponsor policies will also be announced by 2022 and 2024 in order to further modernise the process. Recent news indicates that further policies will be tweaked and improved to form a brand-new system via three IT delivery packages that will be implemented by 2023 and 2024. For instance, UK citizens will be eligible to apply for a licence from the Home Office. However, foreign skilled workers applying from other countries will first need to request a ‘defined’ Certificate of Sponsorship from the Home Office. This does not mean that getting a Certificate of Sponsorship will ensure their employment with a particular employer. When applying for a licence under the ‘Temporary Workers’ category, crucial guidance about the rules and procedures is best sourced from the UK Visas and Immigration website ( because the eligibility criteria is not defined in statute laws. However, there are additional rules for organisations that accept applications under this category. Among other examples, the organisation should assess the eligibility for each route it wishes to take and make the related changes to its HR systems. Moreover, sponsors can also challenge any refusal of a licence in the case of an error discovered in the processing (Taylor 2018). Applications can be made using a digital-default system available online

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