Employers who employ highly skilled migrants and / or foreign scientific researchers, must be recognised by the IND as a sponsor. The same applies to the educational institutions with foreign students, au pair agencies and cultural exchange organisations.
The advantage of the recognised sponsorship is that the application procedure for residence permits runs relatively quickly and smoothly. On the other hand, the recognised sponsor must comply with a number of obligations. For example, highly skilled migrants, scientific researchers, students and au pairs must be properly recruited and selected (in order to comply with the criteria of the Aliens Act), and a duty of administration applies to all relevant information (copy of passport, diplomas, salary specification if applicable etc.). An important element of the obligation to provide information is that changes in the situation of a sponsor or a foreign national must be passed on to the IND.
Although in the vast majority of cases these obligations are correctly met, mistakes can be made due to incorrect interpretation (of obligations) or carelessness. These are mistakes as a result of which, in the worst case, the sponsor no longer meets the conditions for recognition, or inaccuracies whereby changes have not been communicated, while they are important for the right of residence of the employee, student or au pair. All that is of course without any intention.
That is why as of January, the IND started monitoring visits. Every week, inspectors from the Enforcement & Supervision Team visit a number of recognised sponsors to check whether all conditions and obligations are being met in the correct manner.
Warning or administrative fine
If imperfections are found, depending on the severity, it can lead to a warning or an administrative fine. In special cases, in case of very serious wrongdoings or shortcomings, a decision can be made to withdraw the recognised sponsorship and / or the residence permit of an employee, a student or an au pair.
In addition to its own monitoring visits, the IND participates in joint inspections with the SZW Inspectorate, whereby the latter also checks compliance with the Work and Employment Act.