10 February 2023

Employer's Guide To Appendix A Sponsor Licence Documents

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The Home Office has published a list of documents that can be provided in support of Sponsor Licence Applications under the Worker, Temporary Worker or Student routes here.
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The Home Office has published a list of documents that can be provided in support of Sponsor Licence Applications under the Worker, Temporary Worker or Student routes here. If an organisation wishes to sponsor a migrant worker, you must apply for a sponsor licence. There may be additional information required if your organisation is applying for a Skilled Worker and/or T2 Minister of Religion licence. For top tips, do have a read of How To apply For a Skilled Worker Sponsor Licence.


In most sponsor licence applications, you will be required to provide at least four documents, although there may be some exemptions for certain organisations. The Home Office has prepared four tables and each table sets out what documents you need to provide in support of your sponsor licence application. Some documents are mandatory based on the type of organisation, e.g. a start-up or a franchise.

Table 1

This table refers to organisations and specific bodies such as public bodies, government departments and local authorities. If your organisation is eligible, in most circumstances, you may not need to provide four documents. For example, if you are a government department or if you are listed on the London stock exchange (main market), there is normally no requirement to provide any documents unless Tables 2 to 4 specify mandatory documents for the route in which you are applying. Table 1 also applies to Scale-up sponsor licence applications.

Table 2

This table includes start-ups, franchises, charities and organisations subject to regulation or inspection such as nursing homes, financial institutions or healthcare providers. If you are a start-up, you must provide evidence that you have a UK bank account with a bank registered by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority in the UK. For further information on Start-ups, please see our blog here. If you intend to operate as a franchise, you will need to provide a signed franchise agreement. Table 2 also applies to any food businesses where they are required to register with or approved by a food authority.

Table 3

Table 3 sets out mandatory documents for specific routes such as International Sportsperson, Global Business Mobility, Minister of Religion (T2), Religious Worker – Temporary Work, Student and Child Student. For example, if you want to sponsor a proposed migrant as an International Sportsperson, a copy of the endorsement from the governing body approved by the Home Office must be provided and the endorsement should show the governing body's unique reference number.

Table 4

The remaining documents in this table are all possible documents that could be provided to make up the minimum four documents, if your organisation is required to submit them. An example of these documents include the following:

  • Employer's liability insurance cover for at least £5m from an authorised insurer;
  • Latest audited annual accounts prepared by an accountant, who is a member of an accredited accounting body;
  • Lease of a business premises, if applicable;
Do consider seeking legal advice to ensure you have the correct documentation in support of your sponsor licence application.


In addition to providing the documents required in Appendix A, as a sponsor, there are a few other key points to note:

Key Personnel

As a sponsor, you will need to have key personnel to undertake the role of an Authorising Officer, Key Contact and Level 1 User. We have discussed each of these roles in the article, Key Personnel in Sponsor Licence Applications.

Authorising Officer: this person is usually someone who holds the most senior position in the organisation and ensures that the sponsor duties are met.

Key Contact: this is someone who will be the main point of contact between the Home Office and the organisation.

Level 1 User: this person will be in charge of day-to-day management of the online portal, Sponsorship Management System (SMS).

Do take note if any of the individuals of the key personnel have any criminal convictions.


When you are applying for a sponsor licence, there are duties that will be imposed and we have prepared a checklist in our blog, Sponsor Licence Duties: A Checklist for Employers.

Licensed sponsors have reporting duties to report certain information to the Home Office using the SMS within time limits. For sponsored employees, sponsors have record-keeping duties to keep certain documents for each of them. They also have to comply with immigration laws and wider UK law. They must not engage in behaviour or actions that are not conducive to the public good. If you fail to understand and comply with these duties, your sponsor licence may be at risk of being suspended as discussed in our blog, Sponsor Licence Suspended – What To Do Now and we also talked about the next steps here.

Additional checks

The Home Office will check whether your organisation has a human resource system in place to be able to carry out your sponsor duties, including reporting certain information about the sponsor workers using the SMS. To ascertain whether the sponsor duties are met, the Home Office may conduct an announced or unannounced visit to your site where your sponsored employees work. They may also visit you as part of the Sponsor Licence application process.

They will also consider whether there is a genuine vacancy for the role and if it is a skilled-worker route, whether this role meets the skills and salary requirements.

For Skilled Worker and/or T2 Minister of Religion sponsor licence applications, do include the following information:

  • reasons for applying for a sponsor licence;
  • which sector you operate in;
  • Your opening/operating hours;
  • Hierarchy chart of your organisation;
  • details of the job, such as job title, duties and occupation code;
  • information relating to the proposed migrant if you have a person in mind, including full name, date of birth and also include how you identified this person;

Next steps

To apply for a sponsor licence, an online form must be completed using the SMS and pay the application fee. You will then need to email the submission sheet along with the supporting documents within five working days of submitting the online form.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

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