UKVI Emails Surrender Sponsor Licence


Surrender Sponsor Licence

It has come to our attention that UKVI are contacting Authorising Officers of Licences which are not being used (i.e where organisations are not currently sponsoring anyone while the Licence is still valid) and haven’t been for some time to suggest that the Authorising Officer on behalf of the organisation may wish to surrender the sponsor licence.

Please note that you do not need to take any action as there is no obligation for Sponsors to surrender their Licence just because they are not currently sponsoring anyone. However, Sponsors should be aware of, and continue to comply with their immigration compliance obligations meanwhile. These obligations are minimal if the Sponsor holding organisation is not sponsoring anyone. However, Sponsor Licence holders are still required to report any change of office address, any change to the Authorising Office (e.g leaving the company, changing contact details), and any substantial change to the company (e.g takeover, merger etc).

If you require any assistance or now wish to use your Licence to sponsor someone on Tier 2, do get in touch and we would be delighted to assist.

If your organisation has a dormant Licence, the correspondence you / your Authorising Office are likely to receive by UKVI is similiar to the following:

Dear X

We have checked your licence details and you do not have migrants with ongoing employment, you have not assigned any Certificates of Sponsorship (CoS) in the last X months, and have not renewed your sponsor licence in the last X months.

If you want to surrender your sponsor licence, you can do so by logging into your sponsorship management system (SMS) account. The process should take no longer than five minutes and full instructions can be found in the attachment entitled Annex A.

Alternatively, you can complete Annex B below and return it to the address indicated. Following receipt, your request will be processed.

If you do not surrender your licence, you are still bound to comply with your sponsor duties, the details of which can be found in the sponsor guidance.  In addition, we may visit you to carry out checks to ensure that you are complying with the sponsorship rules, as stipulated in Paragraph 17.2 of the sponsor guidance.

If you are no longer responsible for your sponsor licence, you must submit a request on SMS to replace your key personnel as soon as possible. Failure to keep your licence up to date could result in compliance action being taken against you.

Yours sincerely,

Sponsor Compliance Unit
UK Visas and Immigration



Founder and Managing Director Anne Morris is a fully qualified solicitor and trusted adviser to large corporates through to SMEs, providing strategic immigration and global mobility advice to support employers with UK operations to meet their workforce needs through corporate immigration.

She is a recognised by Legal 500 and Chambers as a legal expert and delivers Board-level advice on business migration and compliance risk management as well as overseeing the firm’s development of new client propositions and delivery of cost and time efficient processing of applications.

Anne is an active public speaker, immigration commentator, and immigration policy contributor and regularly hosts training sessions for employers and HR professionals

About DavidsonMorris

As employer solutions lawyers, DavidsonMorris offers a complete and cost-effective capability to meet employers’ needs across UK immigration and employment law, HR and global mobility.

Led by Anne Morris, one of the UK’s preeminent immigration lawyers, and with rankings in The Legal 500 and Chambers & Partners, we’re a multi-disciplinary team helping organisations to meet their people objectives, while reducing legal risk and nurturing workforce relations.

Legal Disclaimer

The matters contained in this article are intended to be for general information purposes only. This article does not constitute legal advice, nor is it a complete or authoritative statement of the law, and should not be treated as such. Whilst every effort is made to ensure that the information is correct at the time of writing, no warranty, express or implied, is given as to its accuracy and no liability is accepted for any error or omission. Before acting on any of the information contained herein, expert legal advice should be sought.

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