Employer’s right to work checks guidance updated

New guidance has been released to clarify the requirements for employer’s seeking to undertake right to work checks on EEA and Swiss nationals.

The latest guidance issued, confirms that as free movement ended with effect from 01 January 2021 EEA and Swiss nationals need to qualify for status under either the new Points-Based Immigration system or the EU Settlement Scheme. However, there is a 6-month grace period to obtain the documentation to evidence their status in the UK.

EEA and Swiss employees employed before 30 June 2021 can continue to evidence their right to work through the use of their passports or National ID cards. Alternatively, EEA and Swiss citizens who have status under the EU Settlement Scheme or under the points-based system may choose to evidence their right to work through the Home Office’s online verification system. You cannot insist that they use the online service or discriminate against those who wish to use their passport or national identity card.

You will maintain a continuous statutory excuse against a civil penalty if the initial right to work checks were undertaken in line with the guidance before the person starts work. Irish nationals will continue to have the right to work and prove their right to work as they do now.

What does this mean for you?

This new guidance does go some way to clarifying the position for employers during the grace period. However, it continues to mean employers are likely to experience some confusion as to who can and cannot be onboarded, what documentation should be accepted and what the candidate may need to do to maintain their status before 30 June 2021.  New guidance on right to work check requirements that will apply for EEA and Swiss nationals after 30 June 2021 is also expected to be issued ahead of that date.

How we can help

Our immigration team at Mazars are here to help you plan for the coming months. We can assist you to navigate this complexity in a number of ways, including: responding to queries on right to work checks; providing training on the requirements; reviewing right to work check documentation; and working with you to create policies and processes that will help you ensure you can remain compliant. If you have any queries, please do not hesitate to get in touch by clicking on the button below.

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