Employers need to check a candidate’s right to work in the UK before they start employment. The way HR checks employees’ eligibility to work in UK companies has changed since the pandemic, and digital right to work checks were introduced on 1 October 2022.
There will be two types of check: a digital check via a UK government certified digital identification service provider (IDSP) and a manual check (in person). The type of check employers are required to conduct will depend on the status of the job applicant.
Employers will no longer be able to use the adjusted right to work checking process that was introduced in response to the pandemic. If employers wish to continue carrying out checks remotely for British or Irish applicants they must use the services of an IDSP or otherwise will need to complete checks in person. From 6 April 2022 employers must use online right to work checks for foreign nationals who have a biometric residence card, residence permit or frontier work permit. Candidates can provide their prospective employer with a share code so the organisation can check this against the Home Office online checking service.
Failing to ensure someone has the right to work in the UK could result in an organisation receiving a civil penalty of up to £60,000 for each worker, or five years in prison if an individual is found guilty of employing someone they knew or had reasonable cause to believe did not have the eligibility to work in the UK.