The Formula for CoS

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certificate of sponsorship uk

Once you’ve gone ahead and secured yourself a job in a Trust that meets all your hopes and aspirations, you’re left with another stack of papers to fill out and questions that need answering. Let’s get started.

What is a CoS?

A CoS is a ‘Certificate of Sponsorship‘ sponsored by the Trust (your employer), approved by the UK Home office. This is an electronic record, not a physical document. Each certificate has its own number which a worker (you) can use to apply for a visa. There are two types:

  • Unrestricted CoS
  • Restricted CoS

Unrestricted CoS

Certificates of Sponsorship for the following applications are known as “unrestricted” and sponsors can assign these without first applying for permission.

  • Anyone seeking admission to fill a vacancy with a salary of £159,600 or above,
  • Those connected with the inward investment provisions, and
  • All in-country applications (with the exception of Tier 4 dependant switchers)

Restricted CoS

The following are referred as “restricted” Certificates of Sponsorship. There is an annual limit on the number of Certificates of Sponsorship available under Tier 2 (General) for those:

  • Foreign nationals seeking entry clearance to the UK under the Tier 2 (General) category, and
  • Who are applying to switch into the Tier 2 (General) category from within the UK as a dependant of a Tier 4 (General) student.

What information should I look for in the CoS?

It’s imperative you ensure the CoS assigned has the correct spelling of your name, along with the rest of your personal, passport, and home address being correct as well. The date assigned should also be noted because within 3 months of that date, you must apply for your TIER 2 visa.

Next look at your work dates. The duration between these two dates will determine the length of the visa you will receive. The duration of your contract does not play a role here.

Lastly, the migrant’s employment details. Please double check your job title and pay, along with whether or not your job falls under shortage occupancy and if maintenance will be provided. If by some chance there is a mistake on your CoS, your Trust may opt to have it reissued, or may make a Sponsor’s note which you can then attach to your TIER 2 visa application.


What’s the Resident Labour Market Test (RLMT)?

The Resident Labour Market Test requires Tier 2 Sponsorship License holding employers to prove to UK Visas and Immigration that no ‘settled worker’ is available for the role they want to assign to a Tier 2 visa worker.

If a settled worker with the relevant skills and experience for the role applies, then the employer cannot recruit a migrant, even if they are more skilled and/or experienced. The only exception is if the role is skilled to PhD level according to the National Occupational Classification framework, then the employer may recruit a migrant if they are the best candidate.

A settled worker is one of the following:

  • A UK national
  • An EEA national
  • A citizen of a UK Overseas Territory, except citizens of Sovereign Base Areas in Cyprus

RLMT is not needed in the following cases:

  • If you are extending a Tier 2 visa in a similar job role for the same employer.
  • If you are are employing someone who is switching from a Tier 4 student visa to a Tier 2 visa,
  • If the job is on the shortage occupation list.
  • If the salary is at least £159,600 per annum.

BUT RLMT HAS NOW BEEN DONE AWAY WITH! From October 6, 2019 – all medical practitioners will be in the shortage occupation list – thus RLMT exempted.

So what does it really mean?

  • You don’t have to wait for re-advert rounds to apply anymore. You can apply in round 1 and/or 2, in ALL the specialties. The playing field has now been leveled for everyone.
  • Tier 2 visa fee will be less expensive as compared to before.

Please make sure all of your information is correct, and then proceed onward to start your online application for your TIER 2 visa.

Good luck!

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Two international medical graduates who work as Internal Medicine Trainees in the UK write this blog with the aim to guide others around the world.

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