If an organisation takes over part of an existing sponsor organisation, or if part of an existing sponsor organisation splits away to form a new organisation, and some migrant workers will be transferred to the new organisation, there are a number of immigration-related factors that must be carefully managed. The content on this page aims to clarify the key requirements that must be met to ensure immigration compliance in maintained throughout the transition or transfer process.

If the existing sponsor no longer needs its sponsor licence

In this situation, the existing sponsor:

  • must report the change (including details of all migrants who will be transferring to the new organisation) to the UKBA within 28 days of the change taking place; and
  • should surrender its sponsorship licence. If the sponsor surrenders its licence but then needs to recruit migrants again in the future, it will need to apply for a new sponsor licence.

The new organisation must:

  • apply for a sponsor licence, if it does not already have one, within 28 days of the change; and
  • ask the UKBA’s sponsor licence unit for access to the old sponsor's licence on the sponsorship management system, so that it can report migrant activity for the sponsored migrants who have moved.

If the new organisation already has a sponsor licence and the change means that it may need to recruit more migrants in the future, we can apply for an increase in its current allocation of certificates of sponsorship.

If the existing sponsor still needs its sponsor licence

In this situation, the existing sponsor must:

  • report the change (including details of any migrants who will be transferring to the new organisation) to the UKBA within 28 days of the change taking place;
  • notify the UKBA if it needs to amend its current allocation of certificates of sponsorship - if for example, it will need fewer certificates of sponsorship than was agreed before the change; and
  • continue to report as usual on any sponsored migrants it is still employing, although it will no longer have any responsibility for reporting on migrants who have moved to the new organisation.

If the existing sponsor is unsure whether or when it may need to recruit any new migrants in the future, its current allocation of certificates of sponsorship will be reduced to zero.

The new organisation:

  • must apply for a sponsor licence, if it does not already have one, within 28 days of the change. If the application is unsuccessful, all migrants who were due to transfer will have their permission to stay and work in the UK curtailed; or
  • can apply for an increase in its current allocation of certificates of sponsorship, if it already has a sponsor licence and the change means that it may need to recruit more migrants in the future.

Adding the new organisation as a branch

If the existing sponsor and the new organisation are linked by common ownership or control, it may be possible for the new organisation to be added to the existing sponsor's licence as a branch.

For further information regarding this please contact us and we will be happy to assist you with all your sponsorship licence requirements.