Further Changes to Right to Work Checks Effective 17 May 2021
Since 30 March 2020, due to Covid-19, the Home Office has allowed an adjustment to the normal right to work (“RTW”) check process which must be undertaken by employers if they wish to avoid any potential liability for employing an individual who does not have the appropriate immigration permission to undertake their employment in the UK. Under this adjustment, employers can check an employee’s immigration status in the UK by using scans or copies of documents instead of having to see the original documents. Alternatively, the employer can use the on-line RTW checking service if the employee has one of the following:
a. Biometric Residence Permit; or,
b. Biometric Residence Card; or,
c. status under the EU Settlement Scheme or Points Based System.
As of 17 May, this adjustment will cease and employers will once again be required to check original documents, unless they are able to use the RTW checking service. Since the on-line service can only be used to check the RTW status of migrant workers, this means that, from that date, in the majority of situations, employers will be required to physically inspect prospective employee’s original documents and carry out the check either in the presence of the employee or via a live video link. Even if they are using the on-line service, employers will still need to meet the prospective employee in person or via a live video link.