Help! My employer’s Sponsor Licence has been revoked, Can I work?
Have you suddenly discovered that your employer’s sponsor licence had been revoked?
Discovering that your employer has had their sponsor licence revoked can be very upsetting. It can be difficult to find out the facts and to understand how this impacts you. First off, we recommend you check the gov.uk’s most current list of licensed sponsors here. If your employer is on this list, their licence has not been revoked. If your employer is not on the list, then their licence has been revoked or suspended.
Startlingly, almost two-thirds of Sponsor Licence holders are not aware of their compliance obligations and risk losing their licence. This can be catastrophic for Tier 2 employers who must continue to be employed by a Sponsor Licence holder to remain legally in the UK.
What does it mean for me if my employer’s licence is revoked?
As a sponsored employee, your ability to remain in the UK is directly connected to your employer’s sponsorship status. This means that if UKVI has issued a letter to your employer revoking their sponsor license, you risk having your leave curtailed and shortened to 60 days.
If your employer doesn’t challenge the revocation and if you have your leave curtailed by the UKVI, your visa becomes valid for only 60 days (or, if your visa will expire before 60 days, the expiry is the time remaining).
You must either make plans to leave the UK with your dependents by this time, or find another job with a company that will sponsor you, and apply for a new visa.
If your employer is challenging the UKVI decision, you may remain working for the company until the decision is resolved.
How can I find a job with another Sponsor?
How easily you can find another position with an employer who has a Tier 2 Sponsor Licence depends on the industry you work in, and your skills. By examining the list of Sponsor Licence holders, you can quickly establish who in your industry has the ability to employ Tier 2 migrants. If you have a unique set of skills which fit into the Shortage Occupation List, you may find it easier to find another position as your employer will not have to run a Resident Labour Market Test (RLMT) before offering you a job.
If your skill-set does not appear on the Shortage Occupation List, any prospective employer will need to run a Residence Labour Market Test (RLMT) to ensure no ‘settled’ workers can fill the position. They will also need to issue you with a Certificate of Sponsorship and run a Right to Work Check.
You may be more attractive to a potential employer if you can direct them to an experienced immigration advisor who can help them navigate the process of employing you. By putting them in touch with A Y & J Solicitors, you can be confident that we will support them and you throughout the recruitment process.
What is a curtailment of leave?
Curtailment of leave is what happens when the expiry of your visa is shortened. Sponsored employees will receive a curtailment of leave if their employer’s sponsor licence is revoked. This formal notice is sent by the UKVI by email or post, depending on the contact information they have for you. The notice will include the new expiry date of your visa.
Once this letter has been emailed or posted, the notice is considered served, and the new expiry date is firm. This is regardless of whether you read the notice or not.
You may continue to work for your employer until the expiry date. This time in the UK can be counted towards Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) requirements. Contact our experienced solicitors for professional legal advice.
Can I travel outside the UK during the 60 days?
It’s not recommended that you do not leave the UK at all during this time. If your employer’s licence has been suspended or revoked, this may impact your ability to re-enter the UK. Spending time outside of the country may also have a negative impact on ILR qualifications, and could impact you in the future should you be able to remain in the UK.
If you have received the curtailment of leave notice and you leave the UK during your 60 days, you will no longer have valid leave to remain and might need a new visa to be able to enter the UK upon your return. You can read detailed information about the curtailment process on the government site.
Can I challenge the curtailment of leave?
If you feel there is compelling information to challenge a curtailment of leave, the only avenue open to you is to begin a Judicial Review. This can be done by an experienced SRA-regulated solicitor.
Judicial review is the process whereby the judges of the Administrative Division of the High Court (HC), and the Upper Tribunal (Immigration and Asylum Chamber) exercise jurisdiction over the lawfulness of acts or omissions of public bodies (including UKVI) and a supervisory jurisdiction over inferior courts and tribunals.
Acts or omissions will be unlawful and open to review if they fall under one of the available public law grounds of judicial review. The key grounds include:
- illegality, i.e. where there was an error of law in the making of the decision
- irrationality (in the Wednesbury sense) or unreasonableness
- procedural impropriety and unfairness
- the decision was in breach of the Human Rights Act 1998 (usually involving an assessment of proportionality), and
- the decision breaches EU law
Judicial review is an expensive avenue to take and only available if all other methods to try and reach a remedy have been exhausted. If you are thinking of bringing a judicial review challenge, it is crucial that you instruct an experienced lawyer to advise and represent you.
We’re here to help
A Y & J Solicitors are experts in immigration law and we are known for doing whatever it takes to achieve success for our clients. As an SRA-regulated firm, we can represent our clients at all levels. Please contact us on +44 20 7404 7933 or email us at [email protected].
Disclaimer: No material/information provided on this website should be construed as legal advice. Readers should seek an appropriate professional advice for their immigration matters.