You will need to apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) with United Kingdom Visas and Immigration (UKVI) if you wish to stay after your visa expires

Important: Important

The HEE National Overseas Sponsorship Team are not qualified immigration advisors and cannot offer immigration advice.

Immigration rules are subject to change. You are advised to regularly visit the United Kingdom Visas and Immigration (UKVI) website to check the latest guidance and rules.

You should start to think about your Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) application at the beginning of your sponsorship due to the absence information you will need to provide to the HEE Overseas Sponsorship Team from each of your employers.

It will be useful for you to request this information throughout your training whilst rotating to all the different Trusts/employers as opposed to requesting 5 years (or more) of previous history.

Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) letter

You will require a letter from your Sponsor, which the HEE Overseas Sponsorship Team can provide. Please email the team on [email protected] to request the letter. 

You should contact the HEE Overseas Sponsorship Team as soon as possible when deciding to make your application to ensure you have the right information and to allow for the letter to be produced. However, you will need to aware of the timescales of when you can make an application with UKVI as the the letter provided cannot be issued too early before your qualifying period.

To find out when you can apply for your ILR, please visit the United Kingdom Visas and Immigration (UKVI) website

Before the HEE Overseas Sponsorship Team can produce an ILR letter we require:

  • a copy of your last 3 months payslips
  • evidence from the HR department of your absences to cover your period sponsored by HEE of up to 5 years
  • your General Dental Council (GDC) number

If you are on maternity, paternity, shared parental or adoption leave we will also need:

  • the date this commenced
  • evidence of your salary (payslip) immediately before your leave started

You will also need to provide confirmation from your employers (such as trusts) of all leave taken whilst sponsored by HEE as this data is not held centrally. Types of leave include the following.

  • Annual leave (including time outside of the UK).
  • Unpaid leave.
  • Study leave (outside of the UK).
  • Any maternity, paternity or parental leave.
  • Any unauthorised absence.

You will need to provide this information as a letter from each of the employers/Trusts that you have worked for over during your sponsorship with HEE. This will be included in your ILR letter.

HEE will only be able to confirm the periods in which you were sponsored by HEE. If you have been sponsored by another sponsor within the timeframe, you will also need to contact those sponsors.


Once we have received all the correct information from you, we aim to email your letter to you within 5 working days. However, the longest delay is often in obtaining absence information from employers/Trust. This is why it is suggested you collect these throughout your training.

After receipt of Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR)

Once you have received a decision from UKVI, you must inform the HEE Overseas Sponsorship team via email [email protected]. You must also inform your HEE Local Team/Lead Employer and email a copy of your new Biometric Residence Permit (BRP) within 5 working days of receiving your BRP. HEE will update your records and cancel your Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) which was issued to you for your Tier 2/Skilled Worker visa (as per UKVI guidance). One of HEE’s sponsor duties includes reporting specific information to UKVI via SMS. One of these reasons or occasions that we have to report to UKVI is when HEE stop sponsoring a migrant due to ILR.

If you need a letter to confirm that you are in the training programme

If you need a letter to confirm that you are in the training programme, this is not the same as the IRL letter. The HEE Overseas Sponsorship Team can provide a letter for you to confirm your sponsorship details. If you require a generic letter for other purposes than ILR to confirm that you are on a training programme (for example, for mortgage applications), you will need to contact your local programmes team. 

Page last reviewed: 29 September 2023
Next review due: 29 September 2024