As a licenced sponsor, in some circumstances, it may be necessary for a UKVI compliance officer to visit you at your home. In addition, UKVI may also carry out a home visit of other relevant personnel, and sponsored workers. By understanding why and when a compliance check may be carried out at a home address, you can put in place the necessary arrangements. In this article, we will explain the reasons why a UKVI compliance officer may visit you at your home.
There are 4 main reasons why a UKVI pre-compliance or compliance check may be carried out at home, as follows:
Reason 1: You normally work from home
According to UKVIs guidance entitled “Workers and Temporary Workers: guidance for sponsors – Part 1: Apply for a licence”, section L8.16 states:
“If we undertake a compliance check, we may visit you and interview you and any relevant personnel at your main office address and any other physical addresses where your sponsored workers would be carrying out their employment duties (including their home address, if they normally work from home). If we undertake a digital compliance inspection, we may interview you and any other relevant personnel using remote video conferencing facilities”.
Section L8.16 confirms that a UKVI compliance officer may ask to visit your home if you normally work from home. It is important to note that this rule applies to any other relevant personnel and sponsored workers who also normally work from home (see below for a list of relevant personnel).
Reason 2: You have no physical office
UKVI’s guidance states under section L8.17:
“If you operate a virtual business model (with little or no physical office space), it is highly likely that we will conduct a compliance check with your Authorising Officer, which may include a compliance visit to their physical address, before making a decision on your application for a licence.”
Section L8.17 confirms that an Authorising Officer of a business with no physical office premises (i.e. a virtual business model) may receive a compliance visit at home.
Reason 3: UKVI decide to carry out a digital compliance inspection
In some cases, UKVI may decide to carry out a digital (i.e. online) compliance inspection. Digital compliance checks involve a UKVI compliance officer interviewing a sponsor or applicant on an online call (e.g. Microsoft Teams). UKVI’s guidance explains that a digital compliance inspection is:
“Where we carry out a compliance check by verifying your trading presence digitally and conducting interviews with you using remote video conferencing facilities. This includes interviewing anyone coming under the general definition of ‘you’ or any of your sponsored workers and may involve you having to present evidence prior to, during or after the video conference interview.”
During a UKVI compliance check, a UKVI compliance officer will ensure that your business is complying with its sponsor duties (see below for more details). If you are in the process of applying for a sponsor licence, UKVI may check that you are capable of meeting the duties of a sponsor (a pre-compliance visit).
There are 3 methods of UKVI compliance check, namely:
It is not just the owner or Authorising Officer of the business who may be interviewed to ensure compliance; a compliance officer may interview any relevant personnel within your organisation, including:
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The main purpose of conducting a compliance visit is to ensure that you are adhering to (or capable of adhering to) the duties of a sponsor licence holder. The UKVI compliance officer is checking that you are (or capable of) actively:
The duties of a sponsor licence holder are as follows:
A Y & J Solicitors is a specialist immigration law firm with extensive experience with all types of visa applications and sponsor compliance. We have an in-depth understanding of immigration law and are professional and results-focused. For assistance with your visa application or any other UK immigration law concerns, please contact us on +44 20 7404 7933 or contact us today. We’re here to help!