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Business Immigration

Sponsor Licence Revocation

Sponsor Licence Revocation

The Home Office may revoke an organisation’s sponsor licence, if they failed to meet or breach any sponsor duties and/or pose a threat to immigration control. The Home Office may decide to revoke the organisation’s licence directly and without suspending the licence first; if the sponsor breach is severe, normally indicating a significant or systematic failure and/or constitutes a threat to immigration control.

Impact of Sponsor Licence revocation

Revocation of Tier 2 or 5 licence can have devastating consequences for an organisation and should not be taken lightly. The organisation will not be able to sponsor new migrants and will be removed from the public register of sponsors during the period of suspension. The leave of the current migrant workers under sponsorship will be curtailed and be given 60 days to find alternative sponsorship or leave the UK.

The common reasons for revocation include failing to adhere to the Resident Labour Market Test requirements, not undertaking Right to work checks or employing illegal workers, failing to uphold proper HR and Recruitment practices, pose a threat to immigration control by facilitating jobs that are not suitable for sponsorship, submitting false or misleading documents when requested etc.

Revocation Challenge

There is no right of appeal against a decision to revoke a sponsor licence and the organisations will not be allowed to apply for a new sponsor licence again until the end of the appropriate cooling off period from the date the licence is revoked. The organisations however may have an option to challenge the decision by the form of a judicial review. This process looks into the ways the decision was reached by the Home Office and assess whether they have acted unreasonably.

How can we assist?

Our Immigration lawyers at City Legal have immense experience in assisting small businesses and multinational companies in sponsor licence matters including new applications, dealing with suspensions and revocations, HR & Compliance audits with action plans and training, sponsoring migrant workers as well as dealing with day to day sponsor licence obligations. City Legal brings substantial experience in advising companies facing sponsor revocation and can advise on the merits and strengths of your case, and advise on the most appropriate course of action.

We can help the organisation by offering the below guidance and assistance:

  • Provide guidance and assistance in understanding the grounds to challenge the revocation
  • Guidance and assistance on collating the supporting evidence
  • Provide advice and guidance on remedial steps to address areas of non-compliance
  • Represent and support the organisation in engaging with the Home Office
  • Seek the possibility of a temporary downgrading of the licence which would permit existing Tier 2 workers to continue employed
  • Assist the organisation to demonstrate that the licence revocation would have wider implications rendering the revocation a disproportionate measure
  • Prepare and send a letter before action to the Home Office
Our Immigration lawyers at City Legal have immense experience in assisting skilled workers and their employers across a wide range of industry and sectors in the UK.  We are a multi award winning law firm and pride ourselves in being approachable, innovative and always going that extra mile to make sure our clients receive the individual attention they deserve. Our Immigration team maintains a high reputation and is committed to provide clear, transparent and reliable advice to our clients.
Frequently Asked Questions
The circumstances that may lead to mandatory revocation include, but not limited to if the organisation ceases to trade, identified as provided false information to gain sponsor licence, licence was downgraded to B rating and action plan requirements were not met, been issued with a civil penalty for employing illegal workers.
The Home office will normally consider the nature of suspected breach and if it is a minor one, and if the organisation is willing to improve they may just issue an action plan, rather than suspending or revoking the licence. If the breach is severe, normally indicating a significant or systematic failure and/or constitutes a threat to immigration control, then the Home Office may decide to suspend and investigate or revoke licence without suspension.
The organisations can apply for a new sponsor licence after the cooling off period. The length of the cooling period is determined by the nature of the breaches and could be 6,12 or 60 months. It is also necessary to provide evidence that any previous reasons for licence revocation has been rectified.

If the sponsor licence is revoked, the organisation will be given written reasons for the same. The decision to revoke the licence does not carry a right of appeal and the organisation may challenge the decision by the way of a Judicial Review at the high court.

In terms of the sponsor licence,the responsibilities of a sponsor start on the day licence is granted and end when the organisation surrenders the licence or the Home Office revoke the licence. The employer still may have obligations under employment law towards the employee.