A recruitment consultant has contacted me to ask if I would like them to put my CV forward for a position. The job is not advertised on the company's website, so I was considering using the recruitment consultant rather than applying directly.

I am aware that once I allow the recruitment consultant to send the company my CV, I would be unable to apply for this position to the company directly, as the company would be legally obliged to go through the recruiter.

I would like to know if there is a time limit on this? If a similar position became available at the same company in say 3 months time and I were to apply directly to the company, would they be able to accept my direct application? Or would they still be legally obliged to go with the recruiter as my CV was on file from when the recruitment consultant put it forward for the previous vacancy three months earlier?

I am aware that there are similar posts on the pros and cons of dealing with a recruitment consultant, but none of these posts mention a time limit.


How long you, or the company your applying to rather, would have to wait in order to take you directly as a candidate (as an already presented by a recruiter previously) will depend on the contract between the recruiter's company and the company you are applying at.

Most mid size and larger companies will have a contract, and the binding period between the two as it relates to previously presented candidates will be spelled out there. The other factor to consider here is any documentation that you signed with the recruitment company, as pointed out in the comments.

Your best bet would be to call the company your applying with directly and ask. The HR person should be able to pull the contract, if there is one, and give you the answer.

  • +1 Also, it depends on anything the applicant signed with regards to exclusivity of representation and duration of such. – Richard Says Reinstate Monica Jul 5 '17 at 17:16

Usually when I've been in this situation, the recruiters have typically asked if I've been submitted to the end client within the past year. If it's a job where there is a specific position number and title, and you've signed an exclusivity agreement for ONLY that position, then the waiting period need not be a concern at all for you.

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