We’ve recently published a number of guides outlining the extensive duties and responsibilities faced by those sponsoring Skilled Workers and Global Business Mobility Migrants, which can be accessed here and here. Last week saw the resignation of Conservative party leader, Boris Johnson – what do organisations that hold a sponsor licence need to do if a Skilled Worker or a Global Business Mobility Migrant resigns?
Responsibility for sponsored workers starts from the day a Sponsor assigns the worker a Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS). Responsibility ends in accordance with the end date for employment (as stated on the CoS), but it can end earlier if, for example, a worker resigns from their role. In such circumstances, responsibility for the worker will end when the Home Office (also known as UKVI) is notified that the sponsoring organisation is no longer sponsoring the individual. Sponsors have 10 working days from the date of resignation to update the SMS and report the change to UKVI.
Note that this duty arises only upon the employee’s actual departure from the business – usually the end of a notice period. Mr Johnson seems keen to carry on in his role until the autumn – it remains to be seen whether he’ll be allowed to do so.
Failure to report a resignation is a breach of sponsorship duties. If the Home Office were to conduct a compliance check and become aware of the breach, they could suspend a sponsor licence while they undertake an investigation and consider whether to revoke a licence, they could revoke the sponsor licence without suspension in the most serious cases, or they could downgrade the rating of a sponsor licence. Downgrading a licence to a B-rating means the Home Office will provide a time limited action plan, and sponsors will not be able to sponsor any new workers until they have regained an A-rating. Sponsors must pay a fee of £1476 for the action plan, and if the plan is not followed, the sponsor licence could be revoked.
Those who hold a sponsor licence must follow extensive reporting and record-keeping duties, in addition to ensuring that immigration laws and wider UK laws are met. If you would like to speak to one of our experts about your sponsorship duties or recruiting workers, call us now on 0044 161 234 6800 (Manchester) or 020 7046 7185 (London) or complete our online enquiry form.