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Thomas, Solicitor
Category: UK Immigration Law
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Experience:  BA (Hons), PgDip, Practising Solicitor
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Is it legal to use an umbrella company to sponsor my UK visa

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I'm in the UK. Is it legal to use an umbrella company to sponsor my Tier 2 work visa, and then take out contracts to other companies?


If so, would it still be legal if I take out a contract myself -- i.e. I just end up paying myself, and let the umbrella company take a cut. (I only need 6 more months before I can apply for indefinite leave to remain.)

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Customer: replied 4 years ago.

I noticed there is an immigration law section.. what if we moved it there?

Hi Alex,


Your question is already in the UK Immmigration section. There is another Immigration category, which is US immigration.


Thank you for your continued patience. We will continue the search for a professional for you


Thanks for your patience.

I’m afraid that you would not be able to do this. Many have tried, all have failed.

IN order to apply for a Certificate of Sponsorship the sponsor company must apply to be be admitted to the register of sponsors.

This involves disclosing the directors of the company and also whether or not they are connected to the applicant that you will sponsor. Obviosly in your affliated role in setting up the company you would have to disclose that you yourself are the intended applicant.

The UKBA would (right) view this as an artificial arrangement and would lift the veil of incorporation of the company to see that the company and the applicant are, in fact, one and the same person.

They would keep the application fee and refuse the application on this basis.

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Kind regards,

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Thanks for your response.


What if I only use the umbrella company to take out 3rd party contracts? There are a few umbrella companies in the UK that offer to do this, and they offer to sponsor tier 2 visas for the employee as well. (e.g. )


The work is still for a 3rd party (e.g. working in IT for a bank), but it's a contract role, so the umbrella company hires me as an employee and takes the contract with the bank, while taking a small cut of the payments.


Is this legitimate?


If the company is not connected with you and not formed solely for the purpose of employing you under a tier 2 visa then it may be accepted.

If the company is formed for the sole purpose of getting you a Tier 2 visa then it should not be accepted by the UKBA, although sometimes the UKBA may make an oversight mistake, not realise and grant the visa in error.

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Kind regards.

Thomas, Solicitor
Satisfied Customers: 7617
Experience: BA (Hons), PgDip, Practising Solicitor
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