Important SMS updates
12 October 2023
Have you logged into your Sponsorship Management System (SMS) this week?
If not, you may have missed some important updates from the Home Office which were added to the SMS on 10 October for the attention of all sponsors.
National Insurance Numbers for key personnel
From 8 October 2023, when you replace the Authorising Officer (AO) or Key Contact (KC) on your licence you must provide their National Insurance number (NINO).
Also, if you are amending the current AO or KC details in SMS you must provide your NINO if it has not already been provided. If the AO or KC does not have a NINO you will be asked to provide reasons why, and you may be asked to provide further evidence that the AO or KC has applied for a NINO. If you do not provide a valid reason for not having a NINO or evidence that one has been applied for, this may affect the outcome of your request.
A similar process was introduced earlier this year for Level 1 users. You should add the NINOs of your existing AO, KC, and Level 1 users to SMS at your earliest convenience. NINO updates will happen immediately if there are no other changes to details that cannot be applied automatically.
Companies House reference numbers
From 8 October 2023 the provision of a sponsor’s Companies House reference number (CHN) has been enabled in SMS.
Companies House records are publicly available and checks with Companies House are completed by the Home Office when sponsor requests are considered. Provision of a CHN will facilitate more effective checking and will also aid the migration of sponsors to the transformed sponsorship system.
Sponsors who are registered with Companies House can provide their CHN by using the SMS process for amending your organisation’s details. Changes to CHN in the SMS are made immediately and are not subject to Home Office approval.
If your organisation is registered with Companies House, you should add your CHN at your earliest convenience.
SMS reminder for sponsors
Sponsors are reminded that they should be accessing the online Sponsorship Management System (SMS) on a regular basis to ensure important updates such as the above are not missed.
Sponsors must keep records up to date as a condition of their sponsor licence, and Level 1 users are advised to access their SMS account at least once a month. Accessing your SMS account regularly allows you to review and update your licence details in a timely manner and keep up to date with the latest news, messages and any upcoming changes.
Smith Stone Walters can support your business in managing and maintaining your sponsor licence, fulfilling your sponsor duties and ensuring ongoing compliance with the immigration rules. To find out more about the services we offer, please contact us today.