Premium customer service for employers

Guidance about the premium customer service for employers, explaining the benefits, costs, eligibility and how to apply.

This is an introduction to the premium customer service scheme for employers sponsoring foreign workers. It explains the benefits of the scheme, what it costs, who is eligible and how to apply.

Premium customer service scheme

About the service

The premium customer service offers an enhanced level of support for organisations employing foreign workers.

Each premium customer has their own dedicated account manager who provides tailored advice and support with all their immigration needs.

What the premium customer service does

The premium customer service will provide:

  • expert, tailored advice, offering guidance and support with any immigration queries or issues a premium customer might have

  • you with account managers who have in depth knowledge about the right to work requirements and can offer immigration history information on potential employees

  • unique access to a number of priority visa services including special access to premium service centre appointments and faster passport return on in-country applications

  • 5 free priority service application upgrades

For the full list of services on offer, please contact the team.


Any Tier 2 or 5 licensed sponsor can apply to join the service providing they meet the criteria.

They must:

  • have no civil penalties from UKVI in the past 3 years and have paid in full any penalties issued before that

  • have an A-rating in all tiers of their licence

  • have passed a compliance check, before or during the application process, to make sure they still qualify for an A-rating


Sponsors can apply for the premium customer service using the sponsorship management system (SMS) and selecting ‘Apply for or renew Tier 2/5 premium customer service’.

More information on SMS can be found in the applications, renewals and services guidance.

Licence renewal applications and Premium Service applications can be processed at the same time. Fees must still be paid for each application.

Sponsors can arrange to trial the service by contacting the team.

How applications are processed

Sponsors who meet the eligibility requirements, and have been visited by a compliance officer in the past 6 months, will have their applications approved within 10 working days.

Applications may take longer if the sponsor hasn’t had a compliance visit in the past 6 months. If this is the case, a compliance officer will visit their organisation within 3 weeks of an application being made.


The service offers a full package of benefits and costs £25,000 a year for large organisations.

If a sponsor qualifies as a small or medium sized organisation, and has paid the lower sponsor licence fee, they can apply for the SME+ package which costs £8,000 a year.


The premium customer service team can be contacted for assistance between 8am and 6pm, Monday to Friday by email

Published 5 February 2014
Last updated 20 November 2018 + show all updates
  1. The premium customer service team can be contacted for assistance between 8am and 6pm, Monday to Friday by email only.
  2. Updated guidance.
  3. Updated guidance.
  4. Guidance updated
  5. First published.