Are you an employer? Did you know you could get a Civil Penalty from the Home Office if you fail to carry out your duties and obligations under the prevention of the illegal working regime?
It is mandatory for all UK employers to carry out checks to make sure their workers are eligible to work in the UK to carry out the work they do.
You need to conduct document checks before an employee starts their employment. In addition, you may need to carry out follow-up checks if they have time-limited permission to work such as a points-based work visa.
You will also need to retain documents for inspection should the Home Office request it.
Should you employ someone without carrying out the checks and they are an illegal worker you could face a penalty of £20,000 per illegal worker. However, in 2024 the penalty will increase to £45,000 per illegal worker for a first breach and up to £60,000 for repeated breaches!
There Are 4 Different types of checks:
This is a new form of check using the services of an Identity Service Provider (IDSP). You would ask the IDSP to digitally verify a worker’s identity. They would do this by using an Identity Document Validation Technology (IDVT). This service can only be used for British and Irish Nationals or an Irish passport card. This is because British and Irish Nationals are not in scope to obtain a share code using the online check.
This is an online service provided by the Home Office referred to as the Right to Work Checking Service. Your prospective employee will be able to provide you with an alphanumerical code which will verify that they have the right to undertake work in the UK. The prospective employee would have to visit the ‘Prove your right to work to an employer’ section of the GOV.uk online Right to Work Checking Service.
Once you have the code and date of birth you can access their information online. The information is real-time and will show you the type of work the individual can carry out in the UK and how long they can work for (if a time limit is applicable). You will need to check that the picture online is a true likeness to the individual. You then need to retain this information for the duration of employment and two years after they leave your employment.
GOV.UK provide 2 documents that list the types of manual documentation that are accepted. List A contains the documents that show the permanent right to undertake work and List B documents show a time-limited right of work.
On receipt of these documents, you must be satisfied that the employee is the rightful holder and that their right to carry out work in the UK has not expired. It is important to check that the documents appear to be genuine. These documents must be kept for the duration of employment and two years thereafter.
This is where the employee has made an ‘in time’ application for further leave to stay in the UK but a decision hasn’t been made yet. The employee will still be able to work in the UK pending the decision, however, you will need to obtain a positive verification notice (PVN) using the Employer Checking Service (ECS).
To request the PVN you will need to provide details of your business, employee information and job title together with the Home Office reference number linked to the employee’s application.
At HPC we can assist you in making the correct checks to ensure employees are eligible to work in the UK. To avoid the risks of penalties contact us for support and guidance.
To find out more information or if you require any advice about eligibility to work checks, get in contact with our team of experts.
T: 0330 107 1037