Do you have the thought of bringing a loved one abroad? Or do you need to bring in a foreign worker for your business? If yes, there is a need to know about visa sponsorship.
Most countries would not allow any immigrant without someone in their country being accountable for them. Visa sponsorship refers to the legal agreement of a resident in a country to endorse and be responsible for an aspiring immigrant.
Visa sponsorship also means the empowerment from the government given to employers who have the right to assign certification of sponsorship to workers from another country.
Who can be a Sponsor?
A sponsor is any individual or corporate body advocating for the visa of a foreigner. Hence, an individual, business, charity group and academic institution can be a visa sponsor. The person has to file a petition or apply for the right of sponsorship, as the case may be.
To be a sponsor, you must meet some criteria which your country will lay down. Generally, you’ll have to prove that you can take care of who you wish to sponsor as they must not be a liability to the country.
Who can you Sponsor?
As an individual, you can sponsor your relatives such as spouse, children or parents. You can even stand as a guarantor for a friend who wants to come in as a tourist.
An employer with a sponsorship licence can sponsor a migrant employee. Employment offers in the UK always demand a sponsor for foreign nationals before issuing a work visa.
Most people entering the UK need a sponsor. Whatever may be the purpose of entry, a sponsor is often required.
Requirements for Sponsorship
The requirement for sponsorship varies with the purpose of your invite of the foreign national. The requirement for an organization varies from that of an individual.
Generally, the following information will be required from a sponsor when applying for a sponsorship right.
1. Immigration Status:
Sponsors must first prove that they are legal residents in the UK. When applying to be a sponsor, they must attach a copy of their passport or biometric resident permit (BRP) to verify their immigration status.
2. Valid Relationship with the Invitee:
The UK Home Office will require proof of a genuine relationship between you and the invitee. Corporate bodies offering employment to non-UK residents have to show they have justifiable reasons to employ foreigners. For students, the university must tender their letter of enrolment as proof that the prospective immigrant is a student.
3. Financial Capability
Any sponsor must prove beyond reasonable doubt that they are financially capable of sustaining the foreigner for the duration of time required. Documents showing your financial status are crucial requirements.
Individuals would provide details of their workplace, bank balance for a couple of months, and other details the examining body deems necessary.
An employer must first be eligible to sponsor by obtaining the visa sponsorship licence. The business type and their financial capacity matter a lot. Financial statements from banks and recent annual audit reports are some of the documents necessary in this regard.
What are the Duties of a Visa Sponsor?
Visa sponsors commence their duties the moment they assign a Certificate of Sponsorship to the worker or invitee. The responsibilities of a visa sponsor can be divided into three categories. These are welfare, monitoring, and record-keeping.
A sponsor must take responsibility for the upkeep of the immigrant. An immigrant would not have access to the welfare arrangements of the host community. Hence, the provision of accommodation and other means of sustenance lies in the hands of the sponsor.
A sponsor needs to know that the entrance and exit of the foreign national must not be without their notice. Monitoring becomes even more necessary for employers. Some of the monitoring duties of employers include:
· staying current on the immigration status of the employee
· filing relevant documents of the employee including passports, and work information
· keeping tab on the employee’s attendance at work
· updating the contact information of an employee
· reporting any suspicious movements or absence of the employee from work.
Record Keeping Duties
A work sponsor has the task of keeping some documents for an immigrant worker for some time. These documents must be available whenever the Home Office demands them from time to time.
A sponsor for a child below 18 years must keep the consent letter of the parents.
When Does a Sponsorship Duty End?
Several occurrences can end visa sponsorship. A scenario is if the immigrant does not qualify to access the UK and all appeals are rejected. Again, if the permit period has expired and the immigrant returns, the duty expires.
Also, the sponsorship duty ends if the beneficiary is granted settlement or receives permission to stay on routes not requiring sponsorship. However, whichever way this happens, the sponsor must report to appropriate authorities.
Visa sponsorship is a foremost criterion to getting anyone into the UK, regardless of the purpose of visit. There is a need to comply with all the rules that guiding a visa sponsorship. Prospective sponsors will do well to acquaint themselves with these demands to avoid sanctions.