The UKBA has recently published guidance on how registered sponsors can apply for restricted CoS under the amended Tier 2. Employers who are reigstered as Tier 2 sponsors are already able to apply online for a restricted CoS for use when the new system comes into effect.

Under the permanent immigration caps coming into force on 6 April 2011, UK sponsors will have to apply for each restricted CoS they need to allow them to employ a non-EEA skilled worker who does not fit within the Intra Company Transfer route and whose salary is under £150,000pa. Employers can apply for a restricted CoS if:

  • they are an A-rated Tier 2 (General) sponsor;
  • they want a migrant worker to do a graduate-level job that starts no more than three months after 6 April 2011;
  • they have conducted a resident labour market test, or can confirm that the job is exempt from the resident labour market test;
  • the annual salary for the job is above £20,000 but below £150,000; and
  • the migrant will apply from overseas for a Tier 2 (General) visa and will score at least the minimum number of points required.

Sponsors can apply for more than one CoS in the same application if the job title, job type, salary, start date and resident labour market test details are the same for each job.

The application for a restricted CoS must be submitted by a current Level 1 user.

No documents must be submitted as part of the application but the UKBA can request additional information. The Level 1 user will have to give full details of the job, including:

  • job title;
  • start date;
  • SOC code (from the relevant code of practice or shortage occupation list);
  • gross annual salary - click here for full details of the points assessment;
  • the organisation's sponsor licence number and name; and
  • personal details - full name, contact phone number and email address.

Once the application has been submitted the Level 1 user receives a unique reference number, an on-screen confirmation and an e-mail with a PDF file confirming the application details.

Applications submitted before the 5th of each month will be considered by the UKBA on the 11th of each month and sponsors should be informed within a few days of the result of their application. If the application is approved the CoS must be assigned within three months from the date that it was granted.