Sponsor Licences –

Licence Types

If you represent a business and you’re thinking of applying for a Sponsor Licence, it is important to understand the different types available and what kind of workers you might be able to employ with each one.

Home > UK Visas > Sponsor Licences > Licence Types

Quick Look

There is a Sponsor Licence for ‘workers’, which allows companies to hire workers for skilled and long-term positions; and a Sponsor Licence for ‘temporary workers, allowing companies to hire workers for temporary positions. It is also possible to apply for a licence to employ both types of workers.

No. Sponsor Licences allowing businesses to hire skilled and long-term employees are more expensive than those for temporary positions. Costs also depend on the size of the sponsoring company. For more details about Sponsor Licence fees, click here.

Sponsor Licence - Licence Types

There are different types of Sponsor Licences, depending on the kinds of jobs needing to be filled:

  • workers – for skilled or long-term employment
  • temporary Workers – for specific types of temporary employment
  • you can also apply for a licence to be able to hire both kinds of workers.

Worker Licence

A ‘Worker’ Sponsor Licence allows businesses to hire workers for skilled or long-term positions.

Worker visa routes include:

  • Skilled Worker
    The particular role must meet particular skill and salary requirements.
  • Senior or Specialist Worker
    For multinational companies which need to transfer employees to the UK.
  • Minister of Religion
    For individuals wanting to work in the UK for a religious organisation.
  • International Sportsperson
    For elite sportspeople, including coaches.

Temporary Worker Licence

A ‘Temporary Worker’ licence will let you sponsor workers on a temporary basis. Temporary Worker visa routes include:

  • Creative Worker
    To work in the creative industry for up to 2 years, for example as an actor, film crew member, artist or entertainer.
  • Charity Worker
    For unpaid workers for a charity for up to 1 year.
  • Religious Worker
    For individuals working in a religious order or organisation for 2 years.
  • Government Authorised Exchange
    For work experience (1 year), research projects and training (2 years) to enable short term exchange of knowledge.
  • International Agreement
    Where the worker is to do a job that is covered by international law, such as employees of an overseas government.
  • Graduate Trainee
    For workers transferring to a UK branch of their employer’s company as part of a graduate training programme.
  • Service Supplier
    For workers with a contract to provide services for a UK company for 6 or 12 months.
  • UK Expansion Worker
    For workers sent to the UK to set up a new branch or subsidiary of an overseas business.
  • Secondment Worker
    For workers transferring from overseas to work for a different UK business as part of a high-value contract.
  • Seasonal Worker
    For workers in ‘edible horticulture’ (eg. fruit and vegetable picking) for up to 6 months.


In the event that a business has either a Workers licence, or a Temporary Workers licence, and needs to ‘upgrade’ it to be able to hire both kinds, it is possible to do so. There may be a fee to upgrade.

The costs of obtaining a Sponsor Licence depend on the type of licence a business applies for, and the size of that business. For more detailed information about costs, click here.

Claim my FREE 10-minute consultation

Click here to see Privacy Policy

More UK Visa Routes

The information contained on this page is sourced from UK Visas and Immigration and is subject to change. While Woodcock Law Limited makes every effort to keep this information current, prices and information cannot be guaranteed and should always be checked on www.gov.uk.

Ready for assistance?

If you have any questions about the changes or want legal advice, contact
Woodcock Law & Notary Public today. Contact us by phone on 020 7712 1705 or
by email at info@woodcocklaw.co.uk.