Exciting news for employers with a UK sponsor licence employing overseas workers.
The Home Office announced on January 24 2024 a significant policy change. As of 6 April sponsors will no longer need to apply to renew their sponsor licence.
If your UK sponsor licence was set to expire on or after April 6 2024 you will no need to renew it.
Moreover, all licence expiry dates falling on or after the aforementioned date will automatically be extended by 10 years. No further action is needed.
If you have received a renewal notice for your sponsorship licence, you can disregard it.
If you’ve submitted a renewal application for your sponsor licence, the Home Office will get in touch with you to arrange a refund of your renewal fee.
A win-win for employers
The change will be well-received by existing sponsors, as it eliminates the financial and administrative burdens associated with the requirement of renewing a sponsor licence every four years.
In the previous system, sponsors had to initiate the renewal process within 90 days before the licence expiry date. The Home Office imposed a renewal fee, mirroring the initial sponsor licence application fee.
Medium and large sponsors were subject to a renewal fee of £1,476.
Small or charitable sponsors faced a charge of £536 for each renewal application.
Under the old system, sponsors typically had wait up to 8 weeks to receive a decision from the Home Office regarding their renewal application.
The number of new sponsor licence application continues to grow year-on-year. The change is likely implemented to free up departmental resources.