Exploring Self-Sponsorship: A Guide

What is Self-Sponsorship?

Self-sponsorship is a unique approach where an individual holds shares in a company, obtains a sponsorship licence, and is then sponsored under the Skilled Worker Visa category by that same company. It’s essential to note that Self-Sponsorship isn’t a specific visa route or scheme under UK Immigration laws; rather, it’s a method used when real-life circumstances suggest it as a solution to meet a company’s genuine need for recruiting a suitable worker. In this arrangement, a migrant worker comes to the UK under a Skilled Worker Visa, sponsored by a company in which they are a shareholder.

How to Apply for Self-Sponsorship?

The process of self-sponsorship involves three main steps:

1- Business Establishment: Initially, you must either take over an existing business or establish a new one. This involves preparing to apply for a sponsorship licence to ensure the company has the necessary systems in place to monitor sponsored employees and manage the Sponsorship Management System (SMS).

2- Sponsorship Licence Application: Once the business is set up, the next step is to delegate sponsorship duties to the relevant individuals and apply for a sponsorship licence. This application must be supported by well-prepared evidence.

3- Skilled Worker Visa Application: After obtaining the licence, designated users within the Sponsorship Management System issue a CoS certificate to sponsor your Skilled Worker visa application. This visa is typically granted for up to 5 years, which is the qualifying period for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) application.

What is the Criteria for Skilled Worker?

Skilled Worker Visa applicants must meet several criteria:

  • Score at least 70 points in the new points-based system.
  • Have a valid job offer at an appropriate skill level from an eligible occupation.
  • Receive a suitable salary.
  • Possess a sponsorship certificate.
  • Pass a B1 level English exam.
  • Show sufficient savings or have their company certify maintenance if A Rated.
  • Not be in a position to be refused under general grounds for refusal.

What is Self-Sponsorship, and who is it for?

Self-sponsorship is a strategic approach to UK immigration in line with the immigration rules. It is essentially a Skilled Worker Visa for the individual who is a shareholder in a company that provides the sponsorship certificate. You can become a shareholder in a business, purchase a business or start up a new business in the UK, and if there is a genuine need for you to work in the business actively and given that you fulfil the relevant criteria, you can apply for a Skilled Worker Visa to come and work in the UK.

Can I bring my family members to the UK with Self-Sponsorship?

Since it is a Skilled Worker Visa, you can bring your family members as your dependents. Your spouse and children can come to the UK with you, extend or apply for indefinite leave to remain.

What are the requirements for Self Sponsorship?

After obtaining the licence, the next step is to apply for a Skilled Worker Visa. Skilled Worker Visa applicants must meet specific criteria, including scoring at least 70 points in the new points-based system, having a valid job offer at an appropriate skill level in an eligible occupation, receiving a suitable salary, and possessing a sponsorship certificate. Additionally, they must pass a B1 level English exam and meet financial requirements, which may involve demonstrating sufficient savings or having their company certify maintenance if A-rated. Applicants must not be in a position to be refused under general grounds for refusal, such as criminality and national security.

How can working with Immigration Connection benefit my Self-Sponsorship journey?

Working with Immigration Connection can bring much clarity and a step-by-step expert touch to your Self-Sponsorship journey. Having specialised in business visas and contributed to thousands of businesspeople’s success journeys in the UK, we can help you with our specialist immigration advice and services. From business planning to business consultancy and immigration advice, you will benefit from an all-in-one consultancy that is at the heart of London and the UK’s ever-changing business scene.

Feel free to get in touch to share your plans and request an initial screening. We identify your next steps and inform you about the costs.

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