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Right to Work Check for UK employers

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The Home Office will update the Right to Work Check from 17th May 2021 for UK Employers hiring non-British citizens.

The Home Office will update the Right to Work Check from 1st September 2021. Employers hiring non-British citizens need to undertake the Right to Work Check to ensure that non-British citizens have the right to work in the UK.

Up to and including 31st August 2021, if UK employers are carrying out a temporary adjusted check, they must:

  • ask the worker to submit a scanned copy or a photo of their original documents via email or using a mobile app
  • arrange a video call with the worker and ask them to hold up the original documents to the camera and check them against the digital copy of the documents record the date the check was made and mark it as “adjusted check undertaken on [insert date] due to COVID-19″
  • if the worker has a current biometric residence permit or biometric residence card or has been granted status under the EU Settlement Scheme or the points-based immigration system, the employer can use the online right to work checking service while doing a video call.

From 1st September 2021, employers will need to check the prescribed documents as set out in the Right to Work Checks guidance.

When conducting a manual right to work check, scanned copies or photos of the original documents of the worker are not acceptable from 1st September 2021. Employers will need to be in possession of the original documents. Otherwise, they will be subject to a civil penalty.

We would therefore advise employers to conduct an online right to work check instead, when possible. Employers can do so if the non-British citizen holds one of the below:

  • a biometric residence permit
  • a biometric residence card
  • a status issued under the EU Settlement Scheme
  • a status issued under the points-based immigration system
  • a British National Overseas (BNO) visa
  • a Frontier workers permit

Employers can use the Home Office online right to work check via this link: https://www.gov.uk/view-right-to-work

That way, employers do not need to see or check the worker’s physical documents. The individual must give the employer permission to view their details by providing a share code. The employer will also need the individual’s date of birth.

Employers should then check that any photographs on the online right to work check is of the individual and retain a clear copy of the response provided by the online right to work check.

Moreover, employers cannot insist individuals use this service or discriminate against those who choose to use their documents to prove their right to work.

Furthermore, there is no requirement to carry out retrospective checks on those who had a COVID-19 adjusted check between 30th March 2020 and 31st August 2021 (inclusive).

Importantly, EEA nationals will still be able to demonstrate their right to work by presenting their valid EU passport or ID card until the end of the EU-Exit grace period on 30th June 2021.

Lastly, it remains a criminal offence to knowingly employ an illegal migrant.

Should you have any questions relating to the Right to Work Checks or UK immigration, please contact our expert team of London immigration lawyers at Barar and Associates at barar.london@bararassociates.co.uk or call us on 020 7487 8370. You can access more information about us via https://bararassociates.com/

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