Read more about our business immigration service

We cover all aspects of business immigration in this section. Select a card below to read more about that topic.


The new points-based UK immigration system

There have been a number of changes to the UK immigration system. The Tier 2 (General) category was replaced by the Skilled Worker route, the Resident Labour Market Test has been removed and the monthly limit on eligible applicants has been suspended.

Employees must now obtain a total of 70 points to be eligible for a Skilled Worker visa. The minimum skills threshold has also been reduced to NQF Level 3 (A-level standard), with the minimum salary level now at £25,600 or the going rate for the job (as per the applicable Standard Occupational Classification), whichever is higher.

The English language requirement, however, continues to apply. To qualify as a Skilled Worker, applicants must obtain a total of 70 points.

These changes have had a significant impact on processing time and employers can now expect much quicker turnaround times

Read more more about points-based immigration.


Apply for a sponsor licence

To employ a worker from outside of the UK, you must first obtain a sponsor licence. This includes workers from the EU, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland who arrived in the UK after 31 December 2020.

You won’t need a licence to employ workers from Ireland and those with indefinite leave to remain, settled status or pre-settled status.

The licence you will need to apply for will depend on whether you are hiring temporary or long-term employees. A Worker licence is for long-term or permanent job offers and a Temporary licence is for temporary job offers. You can apply for a licence that covers either or both of these tiers.

How to register as a licenced UK visa sponsor

You must apply online, submit all the necessary documents and pay a fee. There are various requirements set by UK Visas and Immigration that must be met in order to gain your sponsor license– we can help ensure that your business satisfies all the criteria.

Read more about UK sponsor licences.

Employ workers on short-term work visas

We can assist and advise on the process of hiring short-term international employees for all your seasonal job roles or temporary contracts. The process is much the same as hiring a long-term employee.

Read more about hiring temporary foreign workers.


Intra-company transfers to the UK

The Intra-Company Transfer route has replaced the previous Tier 2 (ICT) category, but the requirements remain largely unchanged with just one major difference. A new key benefit to the ICT route is that migrants will now be able to switch into the Skilled Worker route from within the UK (including those in the UK prior to the rule change).

You can employ experienced workers or graduate trainees.

Read more about intra-company transfers.

Immigration skills charge

You need to pay an additional fee for each non-UK employee you hire. This is called the immigration skills charge, which was introduced in 2016.

You must pay the immigration skills charge if you have workers who are applying from:

  • Overseas, to work in the UK for six months or more
  • Inside the UK for any length of time

How much it costs

The fee depends on:

  • The size of your organisation
  • How long the worker will be employed by you

Read more about the immigration skills charge.


Immigration compliance audits

The Home Office can, at any point, conduct an inspection of your company to make sure you are complying with your immigration duties. This inspection will ensure that the information you provided as part of your sponsor licence application is accurate and that you are able and continue to comply with the duties and responsibilities of a licensed sponsor. You may also receive a visit before a decision on your sponsor licence is made. These visits can be announced or unplanned, so it’s important to always be prepared.

Our knowledge and understanding of the Home Office’s auditing procedures and standards will ensure your company remains compliant. We’ll conduct all the necessary checks and offer advice on where improvements can be made. The Home Office also make a commitment to visit each licenced sponsor at least once during the life cycle of the licence, which is normally four years

Read more about immigration audits.


Meet your business immigration team

Talk to our experienced consultants, OISC-registered advisers to see how we can help with your business immigration needs.

Sandra Zegarac: Work Permits Manager
Sandra Zegarac
Work Permits Manager
Darren Faife - Director of Work permits
Darren Faife
Managing Director: Business immigration
Saskia Johnston: Senior Business Development Manager
Saskia Johnston
Senior Business Development Manager
Nicola Digby
Nicola Digby
Senior Consultant
Harshini Shah - Citizenship and Immigration Advisor
Harshini Shah
Citizenship and Immigration Advisor
Sharifa Chowdhury
Sharifa Chowdhury
Immigration Caseworker
Ruben Van Niekerk
Ruben Van Niekerk
Admin Assistant

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Authorised to practise immigration law by the OISC under Registration No F200100004.