The Home office updated the guidance on 4 January 2021 regarding the following:
If your student or employee is absent
The Home office will not take enforcement action against sponsors who continue to sponsor students or employees despite absences due to coronavirus.
You do not need to report student or employee absences related to coronavirus.
This can include absences due to illness, their need to isolate or inability to travel due to travel restrictions.
You do not need to withdraw sponsorship if because of coronavirus:
This will be kept under review.
The employee or student will still be able to apply for a visa.
The start date for the course or employment stated on the CoS or CAS may have changed. We will not automatically refuse such cases.
For example, we may accept a CoS or CAS if they have become invalid because the employee or student was unable to travel as a result of coronavirus. The Home office will consider this on a case by case basis.
You do not have to notify the home office if you’re sponsoring employees who are working from home due to coronavirus.
Other changes to their working arrangements must still be reported as usual.
You may allow students to start their studies before their visa application has been decided if:
Your reporting responsibilities start from the date that you issue the CAS, not from the date that their application is granted.
If the student’s application is eventually rejected as invalid or refused you must terminate the student’s studies.
If you require further clarification, please contact us.