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Immigration Sponsor Licence Refusal

What to do if your UK sponsor licence application is refused

If you are an employer who wants to hire skilled workers from outside the UK, you may need to apply for a UK sponsor licence. This is a permission granted by the Home Office that allows you to sponsor eligible workers on the Worker and Temporary Worker immigration routes.

However, applying for a sponsor licence can be a complex and challenging process, where any errors or omissions can result in your application being refused. If your sponsor licence application is refused, this can have a negative impact on your business operations and workforce planning. It can also mean that you lose your application fee and have to wait for a certain period before you can reapply.

Why are sponsor licence applications refused?

The Home Office can refuse your sponsor licence application for various reasons, such as:

  • Submitting false or incorrect documents
  • Failing to provide accurate or complete information in your application
  • Lacking appropriate workplace procedures or systems to comply with your sponsorship duties
  • Paying the incorrect fee or omitting a cover letter
  • Having previous immigration breaches or criminal convictions

The Home Office will send you a refusal letter explaining the grounds for their decision and whether you can reapply for a sponsor licence.

What are your options if your sponsor licence application is refused?

If your sponsor licence application is refused, you have no right of appeal or administrative review. However, depending on the circumstances and grounds for the refusal, you may have one of the following options:

  • Make a fresh application after the cooling-off period: In most cases, if your sponsor licence application is refused, you cannot reapply until six months after the date of the refusal letter. This is known as the cooling-off period. However, there is no cooling-off period and you may reapply at any time if the Home Office refused the application due to:
    • The application being submitted by a representative;
    • You did not provide documents or information requested by a specific deadline for reasons outside your control;
    • You applied to be licenced on the Scale Up route and your application was refused solely because you did not meet the definition of ‘qualifying Scale Up sponsor’.
  • Make an error correction request: If you believe that the Home Office made an error in refusing your sponsor licence application, you can request them to correct their decision within 14 days of receiving the refusal letter. This is not a formal appeal process and it is only available in limited circumstances where there is clear evidence of caseworker error.
  • Challenge the decision by judicial review: If you have exhausted all other options and you still think that the Home Office’s decision was unlawful, irrational or unfair, you can apply to challenge the refusal by way of judicial review. This is a legal process where a judge reviews the decision and decides whether it was reasonable or not. Judicial review is a complex and costly procedure and it should only be undertaken with professional support.

How can Freeths help you?

At Freeths, we have a team of expert immigration lawyers who can assist you with your sponsor licence application and any issues that may arise from it. We have a 100% success rate in sponsor licence applications and can ensure your business is well prepared for a sponsor licence. We can help you with:

  • Checking if you need a sponsor licence and advising you on the eligibility criteria and requirements
  • Preparing and submitting your sponsor licence application on your behalf and ensuring that it meets the standards and expectations of the Home Office
  • Reviewing your supporting documents and ensuring that they are relevant, accurate and complete
  • Advising you on how to avoid common pitfalls and errors that may lead to your application being refused
  • Representing you throughout your sponsor licence application and keeping you updated on the progress and outcome
  • Assisting you with any challenges or appeals if your sponsor licence application is refused
  • Advising you on how to comply with your sponsorship duties and obligations once you obtain your sponsor licence

If you are interested in our services or have any questions, please contact us today for a free consultation. We look forward to hearing from you and helping you achieve your goals.

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