Would you like to employ Foreign skilled workers?


 The Tier 2 sponsor license is for UK businesses that want to employ skilled workers long-term or permanently from outside the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland.

You can apply for a Tier 2 sponsor license if you meet the following requirements:

  • Having HR systems in place to fulfil sponsor duties and keep compliance with immigration laws
  • Providing the documents listed in Sponsor Guidance Appendix A, proving you are a genuine business operating lawfully in the UK
  • Appointing people within your business and/or a UK-based legal representative to manage the sponsorship management system (SMS)
  • Completing online application

After you apply, the UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) will assess your application form and supporting documents. They may visit your company to ensure you are reliable and capable of carrying out your duties.

If your application is approved, you will receive an A-rated license and be able to start issuing certificates of sponsorship (CoS) for jobs with suitable pay rates and skill level at or above Regulated Qualifications Framework (RQF) level 6.

We have had the privilege to assist many of our corporate clients successfully obtaining and maintaining their Tier 2 sponsor licenses to employ the best international skilled workers.

You are most welcome to contact us at +44 (0)20 3371 0606 for answers to your questions. Below are some questions we are frequently asked by our Tier 2 sponsor license clients:


Tier 2 sponsor license FAQs


What is a certificate of sponsorship (COS)?

A CoS is an electronic record that has its own reference number, which a worker needs to apply for a visa. You must assign a CoS to each foreign skilled worker you want to employ by using your SMS account. A CoS must be used within three months from the date it is assigned.



What is an unrestricted CoS?

  • Unrestricted CoS are for migrants already in the UK who are in Tier 2 or other immigration categories that are allowed to switch or change into Tier 2 (General).
  • When you apply for your license, you may request how many Tier 2 unrestricted CoS you will need. You must justify your request. You can have an annual allocation of unrestricted CoS in line with the financial year. For unrestricted CoS under Tier 2 (General), you will be able to assign them during the CoS year that always runs from 6 April in one year to 5 April in the following year.

What is a restricted COS?

  • Restricted CoS are for migrants who apply for Tier 2 (General) visas from abroad.
  • You must apply for restricted CoS by using your SMS account. There are a limited number of restricted CoS available each month. The annual limit is 20,700, which are divided into 12 monthly allocations.
  • The restricted CoS application process works to a monthly cycle. Each application is reviewed using a points system. On the 11th day of each month, it will be announced how many applications made on or before the 5th day of the same month can be approved. This is called the ‘allocation date’. If your application is successful, your restricted CoS will show in your SMS account.