A Successful Sponsor Licence Renewal
We were introduced to Mr. J by one of our previous clients regarding sponsor licence renewals. Four years ago, Mr. J had successfully obtained a Sponsor Licence under the Tier 2 Visa Route. However, he had a vivid idea that renewals attract greater Home Office attention than the initial licence application. A refused licence could bring a detrimental impact on his business. Therefore, he wanted someone who could provide a complete sponsorship licence renewal application service.
How did A Y & J Solicitors help in sponsorship licence renewal application service?
Sponsor licences are granted for a period of four years. However, to maintain a licence beyond, an employer needs to make a Sponsor licence renewal application to the Home Office. Our immigration solicitors understand the importance of the licence to commercial imperative and undertake a complete sponsorship licence renewal application.
Sponsor Licence Renewal has always offered an excellent opportunity to Immigration enforcement officials to thoroughly investigate the company’s HR and recruitment practices, procedures, and documentation once again in order to verify the lawful status of the company’s migrant workers.
In this case, A Y & J Solicitors’ team of qualified UK immigration lawyers has incorporated substantial knowledge and experience to manage the entire process and also ensured that the license management to date has been accurately compliant. Our immigration lawyers have also made sure that the application for renewal is timely and effective.
Since UKVI reserves the right to undertake a compliance visit, we have already prepared the company for a site visit and requested corporate documentation in place which is deemed significant. Our qualified immigration lawyers thoroughly audited the HR System, and records which include Sponsor Licence Management (SMS), and identified areas of non-compliance. They have recommended to fully map sponsor licence duties, implemented necessary changes in terms of monitoring and record-keeping duties to the sponsor licence before submitting an extension application. Our team has also delivered training to SMS Key personnel and followed-up support post-site-visits. They were always there to extend advice on ongoing immigration and sponsor licence compliance.
In most of the cases, our immigration solicitors have closely assessed the remedial measures, how to approach dealing with the Home Office, and pieces of evidence to produce to the Home Office. Since the company will be open to Home Office Scrutiny, our immigration lawyers meticulously examined areas of risk and potential non-compliance to be corrected well-in-advance.
A Y & J Solicitors is well-versed in all evidential requirements which are taken to be vital for a successful renewal application of sponsor licence. Consequently, our immigration lawyers have taken a proactive approach to the renewal process and safeguarded the permission to continue sponsoring workers from non-EEA nationals. Later, we have established ourselves as one of the favourites of the company where they always visit us to get advice on ongoing compliance.
A Y & J Solicitors assists in the overturning of sponsor licence suspension
Company A with over 500 employees serving across the United Kingdom has received formal notification from UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI). It has informed that the company’s sponsorship licence is at risk of revocation.
The company was established over 15 years ago and had hired five employees from Non-EEA nations under Tier 2 (General) Work Visa. The five employees were playing crucial roles and the company was unable to recruit local staff despite being advertised for the positions for over 12 months. Losing these five employees could bring a devastating impact on the business. Moreover, the company had to determine how to respond to the situation within the given time frame, typically 20 days.
Admitting that the subsequent steps will be business-critical, the employer has handed-over his case to us.
Find how A Y & J Solicitors helped in protecting the licence from being revoked.
A revoked sponsor licence implies that the company has lost its authority to lawfully hire sponsored workers across visa categories. It not only results in curtailment of visas for its sponsored employees but severely impacts an organisation’s operation. Following a sponsor licence revocation, the sponsored employees must find employment with another sponsor or leave the country. Besides, the company will further be prohibited from applying for a new licence due to the specified cooling period. During this period, the company will need to wait for six months (after the date of the Home Office decision letter) for another application for a sponsor licence.
A Y & J Solicitors’ team of specialised UK immigration lawyers has incorporated substantial experience in advising and assisting the company in the reinstatement of Sponsor licence suspension. We believe that a suspended sponsor licence has the potential to affect your ability to hire skilled employees from non-EEA nations. On that account, our team has taken every possible step to minimise the consequences of a suspended licence on the business operations.
In this specific case, the Home Office alleged that the company failed to comply with record-keeping duties. Our immigration lawyers started assisting with the grounds of suspension, advised on collating the supporting documents, and suggested remedial steps in order to address areas of non-compliance.
Our team prepared a set of legal representations by assessing all the facts while addressing issues raised by the Home Office and left no stone unturned. The team has advised in relation to subsequent follow-up scrutiny.
Our team has also provided assistance in HR processes in order to ensure that the compliant practices are in place. Since every new application for a new sponsor licence will need to provide evidence that the previous revocation grounds are cleared, our expert team has extended every possible assistance with compliance duties and taken care of evidential requirements in order to get a prompt response.
A Y & J Solicitors has successfully refuted the allegations and managed to reinstate the Tier 2 Sponsor Licence with an A-rating by building a compelling response to the Home Office. The owner has retained the employees from Non-EEA nationals and the company continues to operate without any complication.
A Y & J Solicitors assists in assigning a Restricted Certificate of Sponsorship
Company A is an esteemed company in the IT industry. A few months ago, the company wanted to employ 3 skilled employees from Non-EEA nations. However, the employer was frustrated with the complex rules for assigning a Restricted Certificate of Sponsorship (RCoS). The employer had the vivid idea of being subjected to Home Office Enforcement action if unable to undertake the steps properly. Therefore, he was anxiously looking for a top UK Immigration law firm that could meet with all the aspects of sponsor licence management and compliance duties. He got in touch with our specialised team at A Y & J Solicitors and discussed his challenges with our knowledgeable and competent lawyers.
How does A Y & J Solicitors help in assigning a Certificate of Sponsorship?
A restricted Certificate of Sponsorship is issued for those employees who wish to relocate to the UK and earn less than £159,600 per year.
A Y & J Solicitors started the process by advicing the right class of CoS and guidance on Tier 2 requirements that would meet skill and salary thresholds. Our expert team of immigration solicitors assisted the company by explaining the compliant use of Restricted CoS as per the prescribed sponsor licence duties. Our lawyers have meticulously integrated the CoS requirement into existing recruitment practices as well as onboarding processes. They have also matched the positions to the relevant Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) and identified the errors on the CoS allocation. Since the Code of practice is subject to change, our lawyers simultaneously kept a close eye on the latest version before issuing a Certificate of Sponsorship for Non-EEA nationals keeping in mind the company’s broader recruitment needs.
Our immigration lawyers have further helped in determining how to allocate the Restricted Certificates of Sponsorship and also how many restricted Certificates of Sponsorship to be requested from the Home Office.
Generally, UKVI meticulously reviews all applications for Restricted Certificate of Sponsorship on a monthly basis. The application with the highest points score will be approved if there is an over subscription for monthly allocation. On that account, our specialised team helped to keep a tab on the allocation date and ensured that the Tier 2 applications are made by the 5th of that month.
Our client was content to receive support in relation to CoS allocation for Tier 2 visa renewals in order to mitigate challenges with existing sponsored employee’s permission to work.
A Y & J Solicitors has successfully helped in assigning Restricted Certificate of Sponsorship and later advised on ongoing compliance. The company sought assistance for an Unrestricted Certificate of Sponsorship. Our immigration lawyer successfully outlined a strategy for recruitment needs that could be met throughout the licence period of four years. Since then Company A contacts us to get the best advice and assistance in Sponsor Licence Compliance.
The successful issue of Unrestricted Certificate of Sponsorship
Company A is one of the best companies in the sports industry that has been looking for assigning unrestricted certificates of sponsorship to three skilled staff who were having a Tier 2 Visa with another employer. Company A was quite apprehensive about the complex procedure of certificate of sponsorship and the compliance risks involved. Therefore, the company started looking for the best UK Immigration law firm that would support all aspects of sponsor licence management and compliance duties.
How did A Y & J Solicitors help in assigning Unrestricted Certificate of Sponsorship?
An Unrestricted Certificate of Sponsorship is assigned to individuals who are already based in the UK with another Tier 2 Visa and working for another company. The company can also hire migrants earning an annual income of £159,600 or above.
A Y & J Solicitors has provided guidance on assigning unrestricted Certificates of Sponsorship which includes skills and salary thresholds. Our team of qualified immigration lawyers has assisted with compliant use of CoS as specified under sponsor licence duties. They have imparted knowledge on the right class of certificate of sponsorship, accurately mapped the Cos requirements with onboarding processes, and matched the position to the relevant Standard Occupational Classification (SOC). Our immigration solicitors were familiar with the likelihood result where the employee’s application was potentially refused if failed to satisfy the Tier 2 requirements. Therefore, our immigration solicitors keep a close eye on the codes of practice that are subject to change and built recruitment strategies keeping in mind the company’s broader recruitment aims.
Following a strategic approach to using SOC Codes, our immigration lawyers have adviced on the CoS errors and planned for Unrestricted Certificate of Sponsorship. Our immigration lawyers have also supported the company regarding the number of unrestricted certificates of sponsorship and the number of certificates to be requested from the Home Office annually. These steps were taken in order to ensure that recruitment needs are properly met and uniformly covered throughout the validity of the Sponsor Licence.
Later, they successfully aligned unrestricted CoS allocations to organisational strategy in order to project future skills and resources effectively. In the case of assigning Certificates of Sponsorship, the “allocation date” plays a pivotal role. Our team of specialised lawyers was quick enough to ensure that Tier 2 applications are made to the Home Office by the 5th of the month.
A Y & J Solicitors has successfully assigned an Unrestricted Certificate of Sponsorship. We, at A Y & J Solicitors, also helped in meeting immigration needs in areas such as assigning certificates of sponsorship and ongoing licence compliance. After a couple of months, we were being hired again to assist them with a Certificate of Sponsorship for Tier 2 Visa renewals.
A Y & J Solicitors Helps Care Business Reinstate Tier 2 Sponsor Licence
A care home, Company A, with over 800 employees serving clients around London lost their Tier 2 Sponsor Licence following a compliance visit from the home office.
Company A was established over 20 years ago in the care industry had three non-EEA employees who were on a Tier 2 visa. All three employees were vital to the engine of the business since they were managing branches where the Sponsor was not able to recruit local staff despite having advertised the positions for over 12 months. The loss of the Tier 2 Sponsor Licence would have meant the closure of the three branches where the employees were working. Tier 2 Sponsor Licence is always subject to compliance control by the Home Office, and if businesses are found not to be compliant, they can lose their licence.
Not knowing how to handle the matter, and being frightened of losing the licence, the owner handed over her case to us.
How AY & J helped Company A have their sponsorship license reinstated
Our most experienced lawyer was appointed to handle the Suspension matter. Since the Home Office were alleging the non-EEA positions were not genuine, evidence to refute this was essential.
We worked with the owner and the employees to collate the required evidence. No matter how much evidence you have, if it is not of sufficient quality, there are high chances that the Tier 2 Licence might be revoked.
We prepared a set of legal representations addressing each issue raised by the Home Office and left no room doubt.
The Result: Company A had its sponsorship license reinstated
Within less than one month the Home Office reinstated the Tier 2 Licence to an A rating. The owner retained the senior staff, and the branches continue to operate.
A Y & J Assists Entrepreneur Applicant In Receiving Positive Decision on Second Extension Despite Considerable Complexities
We were introduced to Mr K by a previous client, with the intention of seeking some advice on his immigration matters.
Upon undertaking an initial call with Mr K, we were able to start assisting him right away. Mr K had previously completed the applications himself and was at the stage whereby he should qualify for settlement, but due to excessive absences, he was not eligible. Since the closure of the Tier 1 Entrepreneur category, the Home Office have put a strict timing on an applicant’s deadlines to submit both extension and settlement applications. It was imperative to account for this from the outset and advise Mr K on all of his options, especially the future timeline and considerations.
Mr K was an established entrepreneur who for many years had invested and grown his multi-million-pound business in the UK. He was looking for a professional service that would represent his best chances of ultimately obtaining settlement in the UK, and to limit the work and efforts on his part.
How AY & J helped our client achieve his second extension
Reviewing the case
The first stage was to undertake a full review of Mr K’s file, previous applications submitted to the Home Office so we could have a clear picture of his case.
Secondly, we were able to provide Mr C further advice on his prospects, and request only the updated and relevant documentation. The complication was that Mr K had joined an existing company, meaning he was required to show a net creation in the level of employment in the company, following his appointment. From the evidence of the previous application, it appeared Mr K did not maintain the correct level of employment. It also appeared that the correct evidence was not provided.
We conducted a full review of the payroll of the company since its inception to best advise our client. We also liaised with the Business Helpdesk in order to find a solution for Mr K. Having an experienced caseworker can be vital in providing viable and attainable solutions to ensure the best chances of success. We developed a succinct line of argument and requested the correct evidence.
Preparing the case on our client’s behalf
We drafted a detailed legal representation letter setting out the relevant requirements and comprehensive legal argument to put forward to the Home Office.
We assisted with uploading the wealth of evidence directly via the online system, so Mr K and his family simply had to attend their biometric appointments with passports in hand.
The outcome affected the whole family, three children in full-time education, and ultimately Mr K’s business prospects for remaining in the UK after a huge investment of both time and money. Whilst the outcome could not be guaranteed, we worked determinedly for Mr K and left no stone unturned.
Result: Mr K was awarded a second extension to his Visa
The result was returned within less than three weeks, and we were able to inform Mr K of the great news for him and his family too. Mr K was extremely happy with the result, and we will continue to work with Mr K towards achieving settlement.
In the event you have any questions, doubts or concerns as to how the closure of the entrepreneur route may affect you, it is important to seek legal advice from an experienced immigration lawyer now.
A Y & J Assists in Overturning of AI and Machine Learning Expert Tier 1 Exceptional Tech Nation Talent Visa Refusal
Mr A, an expert in AI with years of experience, has attracted the interest of companies in a number of countries. Despite being secure on his knowledge and experience, he was concerned whether this was sufficient to convince the endorsement body, Tech Nation, that he was ‘exceptional’.
He applied for endorsement to Tech Nation, but within three days of submitting all the mandatory documents, he received a decision on his endorsement notifying him that it had been refused.
It was heart-breaking since he had made plans of moving his family to the UK. It was his view and those that had prepared his endorsement application that he had done everything to show a SIGNIFICANT IMPACT in the IT digital industry, as required by the endorsement body. He was a mentor for years to students who were passionate about IT, he has a long track record of significant impact in IT digital world, a speaker to his peers, and a true leader who was always up for challenges.
How AY & J helped our client have their refusal overturned
Reviewing the decision made by Tech Nation
Only having reviewed the decision made by the endorsement body, we immediately identified that it was an error, and Mr A’s endorsement should have been approved. A senior member of staff was assigned to Mr A, and a plan of action was out in place as to how to achieve the best result for our client.
Preparing a challenge
We prepared a challenge to the refusal points and addressed each document submitted with the application. It was important to point out what was the significant impact he had created in his years of experience as a leader and why it was important to have the decision reviewed.
An important issue to address was his potential future contribution to the UK IT digital industry, which we proved by providing relevant written work from his home country, and publications in the digital world.
Mr A’s expert lawyer also used her substantial experience to prepare the best possible endorsement application, leaving no window open for refusal.
The Result: Our client’s application was approved
Within less than one month, the endorsement body was successfully persuaded by A Y & J Solicitors’ review grounds and approved Mr A’s application. Mr A considered that A Y & J Solicitors’ advice was invaluable in obtaining this result.
Successful EEA Appeal For Married Couple
Mrs C, Ghanaian national, arrived in the UK in November 2012 on a six-month Standard Visit Visa and overstayed in the UK ever since. Shortly after in 2013, she met her partner, an EEA national. They had been living together since 2013 and married by proxy in 2016.
In April 2019, Mrs C had applied for a Residence Card to confirm she was a family member of a European Economic Area (EEA) national who was exercising his Treaty rights in the UK. In May 2019, Mrs C and her spouse were invited for an interview by the Home Office. The couple attended and were questioned by the Home Office separately. Unfortunately, in July 2019, the Home Office refused Mrs C’s application for a Residence Card on the basis that her marriage was one of convenience.
The application was refused solely because of a marriage interview which took place on 26 July 2019. Due to discrepancies in Mrs C and her spouse’s answers, the Home Office concluded that the marriage was not genuine.
How AY&J Solicitors helped
We advised Mrs C to appeal against this decision under Regulation 36 of the Immigration (European Economic Area) Regulations 2016, as she informed us that her marriage was indeed a genuine one. After reviewing the refusal decision, it was clear that the reasons for refusal were unreasonable. Mrs C and her husband were asked over 300 questions during the interview, and they provided the same answers. The discrepancies occurred due to the way the questions were asked. Also, the couple were nervous.
The Home Office has the burden of proving a marriage was one of convenience. They had not provided reasonable grounds for refusal, as the couple had plausible explanations for the alleged discrepancies outlined within the refusal decision.
The caseworker assigned to Mrs C drafted the grounds of appeal, setting out relevant case law in support of Mrs C’s appeal and we lodged the appeal in-time.
Thereafter, the caseworker had a meeting with Mrs C and her husband and requested responses to each of the refusal grounds put forth by the Home Office. Mrs C and her spouse provided their explanations, which formed the basis of their witness statements, drafted by Mrs C’s Solicitor.
We then requested Mrs C obtain evidence to support the appeal. The documents formed a part of the appeal bundle. We prepared three appeal bundles and submitted them to the relevant parties. We then instructed experienced counsel who represented Mrs Cs on the date of hearing.
Four weeks after the date of hearing, we received a decision from the First-tier Tribunal (FtT) confirming that Mrs C’s appeal had been allowed. The FtT Judge agreed that Mrs C and her spouse were indeed a genuine couple, and the decision of the Home Office was incorrect.