Guide to sponsorship in the UK in 4 quick steps

Since the end of June 2021, you need a sponsor licence to employ someone to work for you from outside the UK. This includes citizens of the EU (who do not have pre/settled status), Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, and Switzerland.

We prepared a quick guide for you to help you understand how to get a sponsorship licence so you can recruit EU citizens easier.

Basic summary

There are 4 key steps to follow to get a sponsorship licence:

  1. Check if your business is eligible.
  2. Choose the type of licence you want to apply for – this will depend on what type of worker you want to sponsor.
  3. Decide who will manage sponsorship within your business.
  4. Apply online and pay the fee.



Step 1 – Eligibility

You’ll need appropriate systems in place to monitor sponsored employees.

UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) has to review your application form and supporting documents. They may visit your business to make sure you’re trustworthy and capable of carrying out your duties. So take note of this.

Step 2 – Choose which licence you want to get.

This will most likely be the Skilled Worker Sponsorship Licence.

Step 3 – Managing the process


Decide who in your company will be in charge sponsorship of workers.


Step 4 – Apply

You can apply via the application form and pay the sponsorship licence fee. This will be between £536-£1476 depending on the size of your company.


If you are successful in your application, you will be given a licence rating and will be able to give certificates of sponsorship to workers if you want to sponsor employees to work in the UK at a cost and if they’re eligible. The licence will be valid for 4 years.


For more on the whole sponsorship process, visit our simple ABL Recruitment EU Sponsorship Guide


Disclaimer: This is not legal advice and should in no way be treated as such. For legal advice, contact an immigration lawyer.