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Resident Labour Market Test

1.What is the Resident Labour Market Test?

The Resident Labour Market Test (commonly known as the ‘RLMT’) is a means to protect and give equal opportunity to British Citizens and people who have settled in the UK. The purpose of the RLMT is to ensure that a migrant is recruited for a particular role only if that role cannot be filled by someone who is already in the UK.

The RLMT process requires for any employer wishing to apply for a Sponsor Licence to first consider any suitable and skilled workers who are already in the UK, prior to hiring a migrant to fill the job vacancy.

The employer must advertise the job for a minimum of 28 calendar days unless an exemption applies.

2.Who is exempt from the Resident Labour Market Test?

There are certain migrants and/or job roles which will be exempt from undertaking the RLMT. If a migrant or job role falls within one of the exempt categories, the employer will be able to apply immediately for a Sponsor Licence and/or Certificate of Sponsorship, without first advertising the role for 28 days.

We have outlined the most common exemptions below. Please do contact us if you would like to discuss this further, or if you believe that you may fall under one of the exemption categories.

Extending Leave in the same occupation – Migrants who are already present in the UK as Tier 2 (General) workers and who are extending their leave in order to continue working in the same occupation will not be required to undertake the RLMT. If the migrant is switching to the Tier 2 (General) Visa category from another immigration category, they will need to undertake the RLMT unless they qualify under another exemption.

Shortage Occupation – The Home Office has compiled a list of jobs for which there are not enough settled workers in the UK to fill. This list can be found in Appendix K of the Immigration Rules. If the migrant is filling a role within this list, a Resident Labour Market Test will not need to be undertaken and the employer can apply directly for the Sponsor Licence and Certificate of Sponsorship. It is important to note that there may be other criteria which you will be required to meet, if applying under this exemption.

Post Study Work – If a migrant is switching to the Tier 2 (General) Visa from one of the following categories, he/she will not be required to undertake the RLMT:

• Tier 1 (Post-Study Work)
• Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur)
• The International Graduates Scheme
• The Fresh Talent Working in Scotland Scheme
• The Science and Engineering Graduate Scheme
• Tier 4 (General Student)

High Earners – If a migrant will be earning a gross annual salary of at least £159,600 they will not need to undertake the RLMT

Academic Leave – If you are a Higher Education Institution you will not need to undertake the RLMT if you were previously sponsoring a migrant who is returning from a period of academic leave. The migrant must have previously been employed as a Tier 2 (General) Migrant and the break in employment cannot be for any reason other than Academic Leave.

3.How does the Resident Labour Market Test Work?

The job role must be advertised for a period of 28 calendar days through at least 2 different adverts. The job adverts must be in English (or Welsh where the job is based in Wales) and must include specific information regarding the role in question.

Every job must be advertised on the Find A Job website. Please note that this site replaced The Universal Jobmatch service on 14 May 2018. There are few exceptions which are not required to advertise on this site, and we are able to advise you if the job in question will fall under these exemptions.

The job advert must include the posting date and closing date to ensure that it has run for the appropriate period of 28 days.

Each job must also be advertised through a second medium. This will include the following:

• National newspaper which is published at least once per week and which is available throughout the UK.
• Professional journal which is published at least once per month and which is available nationally in retail outlets or by               subscription
•  Milkround – this is a recruitment programme where employers visit universities and colleges to present and/or interview       students, often at Career Fairs. If you use this method of advertising, you must attend at least 3 Universities in the UK
• Rolling recruitment campaigns are permitted. However, if you identify a migrant through this programme, the job must           still be advertised
• Agencies and Head Hunters can be used, as long as the requirements of the RLMT are met
• Online advertising – there is no restriction on the type of website which advertises the role, as long as it does not charge a         fee to view the advert or to apply for the role. We use sites such as Indeed or Reed and are able to guide you through this           process.
• You can advertise the job on your own website only if you are a multinational/global corporation, or if you have more than       250 employees

Once the adverts have been posted, you will need to take appropriate screenshots of each posting on the day that the adverts are made ‘live’. We will assist in this entire process and will ensure that all screenshots are compliant with the Home Office’s requirements.

4. What information must be reflected in the Resident Labour Market Test?

Each job advert must contain the following information:

• The job title
• The main duties/responsibilities of the job, and any relevant skills or qualifications which will be needed for the role
• The salary package – you must ensure that this is compliant with the minimum salary rates for the relevant SOC Code. You     must also ensure that the migrant is subsequently paid in line with this rate
• The location of the job
• The posting date of the advert and the closing date reflecting when the advert will run until (please note that this is not             automatically generated on the Find A Job website and will need to be input manually)

5. What happens whilst the Resident Labour Market Test is running?

During the course of the RLMT, you must monitor any applications for the role. It will be important to keep a record of all applicants and interviewees. It is also important to keep detailed notes for the reasons that each candidate was/was not suitable for the role.

If a suitable candidate is identified through the RLMT who is a settled worker and who meets the requirements of the job role, you must appoint that person rather than the migrant. This is applicable even if the migrant may be more qualified than the migrant.

6. How long is the Resident Labour Market Test valid for?

Although there is no explicit expiration date for the RLMT, you must ensure that the Certificate of Sponsorship is assigned to the migrant within 6 months of the adverts being posted. If the adverts were posted more than 6 months before the Certificate of Sponsorship is assigned to the migrant, you must undertake a second Resident Labour Market Test for a 28-day period.

If a subsequent RLMT is undertaken, the reasons for doing so must be explained on the application for the Licence and/or Certificate of Sponsorship. If the RLMT is undertaken incorrectly, or if the screenshots do not convey the necessary information, you must start the RLMT again.

The dangers of doing it yourself are very real contact our lawyers,  and we can discuss a package which allows us to either undertake all the work or guide you as you go.

Westkin Associates


5th Floor, Maddox House,
1 Maddox Street
United Kingdom
0207 118 4546

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