How much does it cost to sponsor a skilled worker? - | Hudson McKenzie

How much does it cost to sponsor a skilled worker?

As an organisation sponsoring a skilled worker, there are a number of charges involved that you must be aware of. There is a fee to apply for a sponsor licence and subsequent costs involved when sponsoring a worker. 




According to the Immigration rules, a skilled worker will need to be paid at least the minimum salary for the type of work they will be doing. This should include whichever is the highest out of the following three options:


  • An annual salary of £25,600
  • £10.10 per hour
  • The “going rate” for the type of work under the occupation code

Sponsor licence fee


As a sponsor, you will need to pay for a licence to sponsor migrant workers. The fee depends on a few factors such as the type of licence you apply for and the type of organisation you are.


You’re usually classed as a small sponsor by the Home Office if two of the following apply:


  • your annual turnover is £10.2 million or less
  • your total assets are worth £5.1 million or less
  • you have 50 employees or fewer
  • You’re a charitable sponsor 


The cost of the licence for a small sponsor is £536 and £1476 for a medium or large sponsor.


CoS cost


There is a charge for the certificate of sponsorship (CoS). The CoS needs to be allocated to a migrant worker that you intend to sponsor. The worker will need to provide the CoS as part of their visa application. 


Certificates are currently free for citizens of certain countries including:


Austria, Belgium, Croatia, Republic of Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, North Macedonia, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden or Turkey.


For other citizens, there is a cost for each certificate. For a skilled worker, the cost for each certificate is £199. 


Immigration skills charge


An additional immigration skills charge is applicable when you assign a CoS for someone applying for a Skilled Worker visa from outside of the UK for 6 months or more and inside the UK for any time period.


The cost of the immigration skills charge is dependent on the size of your organisation and the amount of time that the skilled worker will be employed by you. 

For small organisations, the cost is £364 for the first 12 months and £182 for each additional 6 months after. For medium or large organisations, the fee is £1000 for the first 12 months and £500 for each additional 6 months.


Should you have any queries regarding the above information or if you require assistance with your corporate, employment or immigration matter, please get in touch with a legal professional at Hudson McKenzie via email at or by telephone +44(0) 20 3318 5794.


The information provided does not amount to legal advice.