Successful Application for Skilled Worker Visa from a Sponsor who was related to the Applicant
We were instructed to prepare for a Skilled Worker visa application for a migrant worker who was based in the UAE.
The applicant received an offer of employment for the position of Sales Consultant from a family member in the UK and requires assistance on the Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) and his visa application. The applicant had previously studied in the UK and applied for both leave to remain and entry clearance under the former Tier 2 route based on his sponsorship from the same company. The applications were both refused because insufficient points were scored under the Points-Based System and his appeal was dismissed by the immigration tribunal.
As we are aware, in a Skilled Worker application, the Home Office must be satisfied that the position available is a genuine vacancy and they must not have reason to believe that the position is a sham or created to facilitate the applicant’s entry clearance or permission to stay in the UK. We were cautious with this application due to the applicant’s immigration history and his relationship with the company director and advised that additional evidence must be submitted to demonstrate the genuineness of the vacancy to succeed.
How AY & J helped the Applicant Obtain his visa?
Under the Home Office guidance for Skilled Worker, a company is permitted to sponsor a person who is related to another person within the company. However, they must ensure the Level 1 User assigning the CoS is not related to the migrant worker as this is a ground for licence revocation.
Having ensured that the company has a second Level 1 User who is not related to the migrant worker, we proceeded to request for a Defined CoSand began preparing for the visa application. The standard processing time for a Defined CoS is 1 working day, however, this may be delayed if the Home Office requires additional information to assess the request. On the next working day, the Level1 User received a request for additional documents related to the position available, including details of the proposed migrant, how he was identified, a full job description and a proposed contract of employment for the role.
As the migrant worker had previously worked for the company while he was a student in the UK, it was easy to explain how he was identified. We also submitted a copy of the migrant’s CV to demonstrate he has since gained more experience in retail industry and meets all the requirement for this position. Of course, we also had to declare his relationship with the Authorising Officer to the Home Office for full disclosure.
The Home Office was satisfied with the documents provided and granted a Defined CoS to the licence within a few days of the submission of the additional information. We then proceeded to submit the migrant’s visa application from the UAE.
We prepared a legal representation with the application to detail how all the requirements under Appendix Skilled Worker are met and addressed the applicant’s previous refusals in the UK.
The application was submitted with the standard service as priority service is still suspended in some countries. However, we received confirmation of the grant of the visa within 1 week of the migrant’s biometric appointment in Abu Dabhi and the migrant is now ready to travel to the UK.
Successfully assigning a CoS to a Skilled Worker
Mr. G’s company, unfamiliar with the sponsorship process, had provided Mr. G with a Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) reference number that had been given in a previous application. Mr. X discovered this only when the Home Office issued a letter requiring that the sponsor assigns a new Certificate of Sponsorship within a strict deadline.
Mr. G had submitted his Skilled Worker visa application around 2 months before, and was acutely aware that if the caseworker’s deadlines were missed, or if the CoS was incorrectly assigned, his (and his dependant’s) visa status would be at serious risk.
Mr. G wanted to find support for his sponsor, to get it right this time.
Mr. G tried at least one other company before speaking with us. He wasn’t able to get the swift assistance needed, so, having noticed our positive feedback on Google, decided to give us a call.
Mr. G spoke to our advisors about his circumstances – they quickly assured him that we could assist with the required action and gave a clear overview of the process and timeframes for processing the application.
How did A Y & J Solicitors help the Employee and the Sponsor?
A Y & J Solicitors’ team of UK immigration lawyers consulted directly with Mr.G and his employer to gather the relevant information to assess the case, as a first step.
A Y & J Solicitors have extensive experience in the field and made sure to carefully review all the data provided against the immigration rules, to reassure the client of the viability of the application.
Satisfied all the relevant details had been checked thoroughly and any relevant feedback delivered to the client clearly and promptly, A Y & J Solicitors arranged a mutually convenient time to remotely assist the sponsor with assigning the CoS, ensuring every detail was correctly entered onto the Sponsor Management System.
Mr. G’s visa application was approved a few weeks later and he can continue working for his sponsor. Mr. G was grateful for the quick, precise, and friendly support to overcome the unexpected challenge faced.
The experience made Mr. G and his sponsor very aware of how much of a minefield sponsorship can be… but equally they also have also discovered, through choosing with A Y & J Solicitors, how smooth the process can be, with good quality, responsive support.
Successful application for entry clearance as a spouse of a British citizen
Our client,Mr K,initially came to the UK as a student. While in the UK he submitted an extension application as a Student. The extension application was refused, and he eventually became an overstayer in the UK. A few years later, he met his current wife, and they got married. He was advised by his previous legal representative to apply for leave to remain under family/private life route in the UK. The application was refused, and his previous legal representative filed a judicial review application. The judicial review permission was refused, and he submitted a new in country application which was subsequently refused. Mr K appealed against the decision, and the appeal was dismissed. Mr K sought our guidance in relation to his immigration matter, and eventually, he left the UK.
How we helped
Following consultation with Mr K, we advised him that he should leave the UK and apply for entry clearance as a spouse of a British citizen from abroad.
Prior to his departure, we prepared a detailed checklist for Mr K outlining the supporting documents he needed to gather for his spouse application, especially the records to prove his relationship to his wife. We helped Mr K collect several correspondence items addressed to him and his wife, showing that they previously lived together. We also provided their online chatting history to prove that they kept in touch with each other while being apart.
In respect of the financial requirement, Mr K was of an opinion that his wife does not meet the financial requirement because she was on maternity leave. We checked Mr K’s wife’s payslips and assured him that she met the minimum income threshold based on her last six-month payslips before the commencement of the maternity leave, which is how the Home Office will assess if a person is on maternity leave. We also helped Mr K’s wife to get a letter from her employer confirming certain information required by the Home Office.
Finally, we prepared detailed legal representations addressing Mr K’s previous refusal histories and overstay issue.
Mr K’s visa application was approved within two months using the standard service. Despite his overstaying issue which has been addressed in our legal representations, we obtained a successful outcome. Finally, Mr K reunited with his wife and their lovely baby. They can enjoy their family life in the UK now.
Successful entry clearance application as a Skilled Worker – Architect
The client, Mr A, is an Iranian national residing in the UK as a Tier 4 Student. He received an offer of employment as an Architect with a UK based company; however, the company did not have a valid sponsor licence and his leave expired whilst the sponsor licence application was being processed.
Despite being on a Tier 4 Student visa, Mr A could not rely on the exemption under Tier 2, now Skilled Worker to switch into the work category whilst he was in the UK. The client had to return to his country of residence to make an entry clearance application as a result. During which, the immigration system reform took place, and he was caught up in the switch and uncertainties between Tier 2 (General) and Skilled Worker.
Following the successful licence application for his sponsor, Mr A instructed us to prepare his immigration application following the receipt of sponsorship offered by his employer.
How AY & J helped
We advised the client the difference in the requirements for Tier 2 (General) and Skilled Worker and how it may affect him, depending on the date of his application. The salary threshold was an issue should he consider making an application under Tier 2 General.
Having reviewed the new Immigration Rules and discussed with the client and his sponsor, we decided the best course of action would be applying under the new Skilled Worker route. We collated the application pack for the application with a covering letter to explain how Mr A met all the requirement for this visa.
Within three weeks, Mr A received a positive decision for his application and safely returned to the UK to commence his appointment as an Architect.
Successful application for an extension as a Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) migrant and PBS Dependant partner
Mr A was a previous client of ours, whom we have helped at the time of his Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) Entry Clearance. Time passed by, and Mr A approached us for help to extend his leave to remain as a Tier 1 (Entrepreneur). If at the time of his initial application things were quite smoothly, the situation was not the same for his extension application.
How we helped
Mr A had to satisfy all requirements stated in paragraph 245DD of the Immigration Rules. He had to prove that his company created at least two full-time employees, the genuineness of the business and his proposed investment of £200.000. To assist Mr A in succeeding with his application, we prepared a detailed checklist to outline specified documents he needed for the investment, job creation and genuineness of the business. We liaised with Mr A’s accountant and helped them to gather all the documents.
Mr A decided to invest his £200k using the Director Loan route. In such circumstances, a Director is required to show documents providing the £200k transfer from his personal account into the business account. While reviewing his documents, we identified that only £110K could be readily identifiable transactions in his business bank statements. We identified that the investment was down by £90k. Mr A was not aware that each transaction he did for the business needed to be recorded on his business bank statement to rely on the £200k investment. We explained to Mr A the issue, and he informed us that he used his personal account to spend money on the business when his company did not have a business account. We requested receipts/invoices he paid for the company using his own card. Based on those, he spent around £100K in total from his personal account before his company opened a business account. While the accountancy rule allows business owners to pay for their business expenses using their credit card, the same cannot be said about the Immigration Rules. Therefore, instead of relying on investment of £200k as director loan, which in any event he could not meet the specified evidence, we found a solution for Mr A. We advised that the shortfall of £90k would count as a direct cash investment. Mr A’s accountant confirmed the same on the annual accounts as well, and we proceeded with the application based on director loan (£110k) and cash investment(£90k).
Another issue was that Mr Adid not have sufficient maintenance funds in his bank account for a consecutive 90 days. We checked all his UK accounts and overseas accounts. Eventually, we combined all his personal bank accounts to score points for the maintenance funds for himself and his dependants.
We helped Mr A to submit the online application and uploaded all the documents for his biometric appointment.
Only a few weeks after Mr A and his family enrolled their biometrics;their applications were approved. With our help, Mr A and his family can continue to live and work in the UK.
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.