Chetal Patel, partner in our Immigration team has been featured in a recent Personnel Today article.

The piece focuses on new figures recently published showing that the number of UK businesses applying for permission to employ skilled overseas workers has remained static since the start of the year and that only 2% of private sector employers in the UK are in a position to employ new arrivals from next year.

But will employers be caught out when the UK leaves the EU on 1 January 2021?

Commenting on this news, Chetal said: “we haven’t seen the massive surge in sponsor licence applications that we had originally anticipated.

The Home Office doesn’t want to create a panic if businesses don’t need a sponsor licence but equally they want to avoid a position where businesses aren’t ready for our new immigration system. In the coming months, we can expect more glossy brochures with catch phrases like the application process being simple and straightforward so one would expect a rise in applications.

The sponsorship process can be cumbersome for organisations. It’s not just a tick box exercise of submitting a sponsor licence application but organisations need to have systems in place to comply with their duties.

Sponsorship is expensive and more and more clients are considering how to frame the level of support that they provide to sponsored workers with their visa applications. Organisations are having to consider their recruitment budgets for the coming new year and this has been a sensitive matter for some, particularly where businesses have been hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic.”

Chetal then added that Bates Wells had seen an increase in instructions for assisting with new sponsor licence applications, particularly where organisations were heavily reliant on a European workforce.

Click here to read the full article and please do get in touch with our Immigration team if you have any questions on the issues raised in the above.