To obtain and maintain a Tier 4 sponsor licence, institutions must show that all their sites meet acceptable educational quality standards, including both the quality of teaching and the management of the institution. An educational oversight body, which is independent from the Home Office, makes this assessment.
A sponsor which fails an educational oversight inspection will not be permitted to sponsor any further Tier 4 students until it achieves a satisfactory rating in a subsequent inspection, but will not have its licence revoked. It will be permitted to continue teaching its current Tier 4 students.
Tier 4 sponsors must also pass a Basic Compliance Assessment, which is a mandatory annual check on the compliance rate of a sponsor’s students. If a sponsor fails this check, it will normally have its licence revoked and will therefore not be able to sponsor any further Tier 4 students. There are no other compliance factors relating to Tier 4 sponsors which affect the consideration of Tier 4 immigration applications other than whether the sponsor continues to hold a valid tier 4 licence.
If a sponsor’s Tier 4 licence is revoked, the Home Office will consider whether the reasons that led to the revocation affect any other sponsor licence that it holds. Any action taken against the other licence depends on the nature of the compliance issues identified. Such actions may include imposing an action plan to assist the sponsor improve its compliance, or revocation of the licence in serious cases of non-compliance.
Each application is assessed on its own merits against the relevant immigration rules and policy.