If the business you work for is a Tier 2 licensed sponsor with the UK Border Agency, the person responsible for immigration matters will most likely have received an email from the UK Border Agency asking that the business submits a request for its allocation of unrestricted Certificates of Sponsorship ("Certificates") for the year April 2013 to April 2014.
The business should ensure that it has spare unrestricted Certificates at all times, in case it needs to transfer a non EEA national from an overseas office to the UK, hire a non EEA national who is already working in the UK or hire a non EEA national into a senior position in the UK where the individual will earn at least £150,000 per annum.
We recommend that you consider how many of each type of unrestricted Certificates the business is likely to need during the period from 6 April 2013 - 5 April 2014. It is better to slightly overestimate the number required and have some unused Certificates remaining, rather than underestimating and being short at the year end. It is possible to apply for additional Certificates during the year but it may take several months for the UKBA to process such requests.
The request should be submitted as soon as possible to allow the UKBA to process the request in time for 6 April 2013. If they have not processed the request by 6 April the business will not have any unrestricted Certificates to issue for a period of time. This would prevent it from being able to issue unrestricted Certificates in certain cases, including in relation to Tier 2 (ICT) extensions, new hires where the person already has leave in the UK and new hires where the person will be earning over £150,000 per annum.
If you have any queries or need any assistance with the process, or assistance in drafting the wording setting out why you require Certificates please contact Kerry Garcia on +44 (0)1483 734270 or email firstname.lastname@example.org