Corporate Immigration

Corporate Immigration & Sponsor Licensing

The introduction of the Points Based System Compliance in 2008 placed the onus of compliance with the Immigration Rules on the employer through the system of sponsorship licensing.

Under the UKBA's published policy guidance for businesses wishing to employ migrant workers there are numerous mandatory duties and requirements that employers must maintain in order to remain compliant. These duties include maintaining accurate and up to date records on their migrant workers to ensure the prevention of illegal employment. Failure to follow proper procedure (also known as breach of compliancy) can result in civil penalties and the downgrading or revocation of a sponsor licence for licensed sponsors.

The view that immigration compliance is a simple HR issue is a long-gone fallacy and it is undoubtedly time that the matter is understood and taken seriously at the highest corporate levels.

Whether the Company is newly established or a multi-national Group, we make sure that every case is fully assessed from the beginning and fully supported. We will present you with advice on what options are available and discuss any relevant immigration or timing issues. Every organisation is different. Our level of involvement can be tailored to suit your needs and how your business is structured. If we can understand what your organisation is looking for, we can explain what services are available, and how we can help.


  • Sponsorship Duties: We provide advice and practical support in recruitment practices for prospective non-EEA employees both within and outside the UK; applications for and the use of restricted and non-restricted COS; completing resident labour market tests; acting as Level 1 and/or Level 2 user including issuing COS; employee monitoring and reporting, including monitoring and reminders for updating employee contact details, visa expiry dates and the re-copying of passports.
  • Tier 2 & 4 Licence Applications: To ensure that your Sponsorship Licence is successful we will assist you in making a detailed assessment of your personal circumstances to ensure this is the right course for you; we will ensure that you have the correct documents to support and strengthen your case; We will act as your representatives to complete and submit your UK Sponsorship Licence application. and we will keep you updated in regards to your application.
  • Sponsor License Management & Compliancy Auditing: As an employer, you are legally required to make sure that every person you employ, regardless of nationality and length of service, is legally permitted to work in the UK. Depending on your employee’s nationality and or visa status, there are numerous combinations of different documents that you must check and retain. As the Level 1 User for your sponsor licence we can provide you with the following on-going services:
    • Evaluation of your current business operations and HR systems
    • Assistance with improving your current HR practises to ensure that you comply with your duties as a Tier 2 Sponsor
    • Immigration audits & recommendations
    • Pre-hire assessments for candidates
    • Seminars and training on all aspects of Prevention of Illegal Working legislation and Tier 2 Sponsor duties
    • Attending and representing the client in UKBA Compliancy Visits.
    • Providing advice to your employees or students regarding their immigration status.
  • Training & Support: Even experienced HR teams can find it difficult to keep up with the latest changes in UK immigration law, policy, and best practice. From start-up businesses to international Groups, we can provide you with ongoing support and management of your sponsorship licence.
  • Downgrades & Sponsor Action: Plans: We provide support on responding to UKBA action plans to get your business back to an “A” rating. The service includes our own inspections before the UKBA return to re-assess progress. We are always more precise and exacting in our standards than the UKBA visiting officers and in this way ensure our clients are fully compliant.
  • Sponsor Licence Suspension: UKBA can suspend a sponsor’s licence temporarily if they are investigating the business. During this period UKBA allows the sponsor 28 days to make representations as to why the decision to suspend the licence was incorrect. If your sponsor license is suspended, we can assist you with making representations and challenging the decision. To date we have been successful in having licences restored following such representations.
  • Sponsor Licence Revocation: Although a Sponsor Licence revocation can be a catastrophic event with no obvious or swift avenue of redress for the affected sponsor Mepco can assist with representations and putting together grounds for an injunction and Judicial Review against the decision.
  • Civil Penalties: If you are an employer who has been issued with a civil penalty for allegedly employing illegal immigrants obtaining specialist advice at the earliest opportunity can be critical in order that appropriate representations can be made putting forward all relevant facts. To date we have a 100% record in having civil penalties withdrawn. Followiing the successful conclusion to such cases we usually offer a follow-up advice service to ensure that such actions do not reccur.

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