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New Priority Change of Circumstance Service for Tier 2 & Tier 5 Sponsors

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The Home Office has introduced a new Priority Change of Circumstance Service for Tier 2 and Tier 5 sponsors.

As of 7 November 2016, Tier 2 and Tier 5 A-rated sponsors are able to apply for faster consideration of four types of change of circumstance requests:

  • In-year Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) allocation
  • Follow-on CoS allocation
  • Add new Level 1 user
  • Replace Authorising Officer (AO)

Under the new service, sponsors can expect applications to be considered within 5 working days.

However, there will be a maximum of 20 priority requests accepted daily (Monday to Friday, 9am to 4pm). If fully subscribed, sponsors can apply the next working day.

The fee for the service is £200 per request.

How to Apply for the Priority Change of Circumstance Service

  • Submit your change of circumstances request (see SMS manual).
  • Call the telephone number provided.
  • Give your sponsorship licence number, and pay the fee where the priority service is available.
  • Within 5 working days, you can expect an email to your AO email address informing you of the outcome.

Important Points to Note

  • The priority service is only available to A-rated Tier 2 and 5 licensed sponsors.
  • The service does not apply to restricted certificates of sponsorship.
  • Requests to replace an AO require a submission sheet to be sent to the following address:

Tier 2 and 5 Priority Service – Authorisation Code XXX
Sponsor Licensing Unit
PO Box 3468
S3 8WA

  • The authorisation code will be supplied when you have paid the fee.
  • Complex requests or those requiring extra checks may take longer than 5 days.
  • You may be eligible for a refund where consideration is delayed for ‘other reasons’ such as technical difficulties at UKVI.
  • The service does not guarantee your request will be approved.

Duty to Notify Changes in Circumstances

Under the certificate of sponsorship, the employers and employee are under a duty to notify the UKVI of specific changes in circumstances within 10 working days.

Failure to report any Tier 2 changes of circumstances can result in licence downgrading, a revoked licence or a fine may be issued for failure to comply with the sponsor licence and migrant reporting duties.

We are experienced advisers to sponsor licence holders. Please contact us if you have a question about the new priority service, the change of circumstances notification process in general, or any other query relating to Tier 2 visa management and certificates of sponsorship.

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