How Long is Certificate of Sponsorship Valid in the UK


Immigration rules change with time and this happened recently in the UK too. The significant change in immigration was brought on 1 December 2020. As a result of this change, the Intra company transfer visa and the skilled worker visa replaced the Tier 2 category. Therefore, if you are planning to apply for a visa or you are thinking about immigration, you need to learn about the new laws and regulations.

The new laws

According to the new laws and rules, you will need a certificate of sponsorship (CoS) and also your sponsor licence from your employer. This certificate of sponsorship is necessary for both skilled worker visas and intra-company transfer visas. Therefore, you must obtain these along with your other documents.

How to obtain the sponsorship licence?

As for the sponsorship licence, your employer will apply for it. He will request the authorities to provide him with the licence that they will give to the employee. If the employer is granted the licence, he will assign it to the employee through their online Sponsor Management System account. You can get more information regarding your UK sponsorship licence at

How long is this certificate of sponsorship valid?

It is necessary for employees to have their certificate of sponsorship because they won’t be allowed to work in the United Kingdom without this.

However, this certificate is only valid for 3 months. Therefore, you might need to renew it if you are applying for a new job. Furthermore, it might scare you after the expiry of your CoS what you will do. How long will it take to get a new one and a similar question? But don’t worry, it takes only a day to get your CoS.

Applying for the licence of sponsorship

If you are an employee, you do not need to apply for this licence. All you need to do is to get a job and your employer will provide you with this certificate.

Mainly, there are two types of sponsorship licences depending on your job status.

  1. The first is a “workers” licence which is for workers who got a long-term job offer. This includes specialist or senior worker visa workers, skilled workers, international Sportspersons, and Ministers of Religion.
  2. The second type of licence is for “Temporary workers”. So if you have got a permanent position in the company, you will get this licence. It is for graduate trainees, scale-up workers, secondment workers, UK expansion workers, and service suppliers.

Different types of CoS

The different types of CoS are;

1. Defined Certificates:

Defined certificates are the ones that are issued for skilled workers. They were previously known as restricted certificates. To get these, the employer has to go through the Sponsorship Management System after getting their Sponsor licence.

2. Undefined certificates:

The second type of certificate is the undefined one. These have been known as unrestricted certificates. They are needed for employing Skilled Workers who are already living in the UK. Furthermore, it is also needed for the remaining visa categories.

In addition to this, the organization also needs to submit an estimate of the number of undefined certificates that you are likely to apply for in your first year. In case the estimated number gets exceeded and you need more certificates, you can easily apply for them through a message.

Can anyone get the CoS easily?

It is not difficult to get a certificate of sponsorship. However, there are some conditions that you need to fulfil, these include;

  1. Your organization must be authentic and genuine. In addition to this, you will need to show that your organization is operating lawfully within the United Kingdom.
  2. You will be asked for proof to show that your organization can carry out the duties of visa sponsorships. Furthermore, you will also prove that you have proper recruitment practices and an active and appropriate HR department and systems in your organization.

Once you prove your authenticity and legality, you will get the sponsorship licence. After getting the licence, you will be allowed to hire anyone from all around the world. So you will have permission to lawfully employ skilled workers from overseas.

The cost of getting your CoS

Even if it does not take much time, you will need to pay a certain amount as a fee for getting the licence. In addition to this, the fee varies with the type of licence that you need. There are different types of licences and so do different fees. Here are the details;

  1. If you need the licence for an ICT worker or a skilled worker, the fee for that will be 199 pounds.
  2. If the licence is for temporary workers, the fee for that will be 21 pounds.
  3. The fee for the International Sportspersons visa is also 199 pounds. Moreover, this fee is for the licence which will be valid for 12 months.
  4. On the other hand, if the sportsperson’s licence is for less than 12 months or 12 months, the fee will be only 21 pounds.

In addition to this, there will be a change in the fees if you apply for the type of application. For example, there will be an application fee for your visa. Furthermore, if you apply for Immigration Health Surcharge, you will pay an extra fee.

But wait…

There is a twist here. Although there is a fee for the licence, there are also some exceptions. If the employee belongs to any one of the European countries, you won’t have to pay any price.