The temporary adjustments to the right to work check introduced on 30 March 2020, due to COVID-19, are ending.
From 21 June 2021, you must check the prescribed documents as set out in the right to work checks: an employer's guide. This means that when carrying out a document check you must be in possession of the original documents. You can no longer accept a scanned copy or a photo of original documents, as this will not provide you with a defence against liability for a civil penalty.
Alternatively, where applicable, you can use the Home Office right to work online service which does not require you to see or check the individual’s physical documents. You can video call when carrying out a check using this service, as right to work information is provided in real time direct from Home Office systems. The employee must give you permission to use view their details they do this by providing you with a share code. The online service can be used by those with, a current Biometric Residence Permit or Card, status under the EU Settlement Scheme, or the points-based immigration system.
Employers cannot insist individuals use this service or discriminate against those who choose to use their documents to prove their right to work.
There is no requirement to carry out retrospective checks on those who had a COVID-19 adjusted check between 30 March 2020 and 20 June 2021 (inclusive). This reflects the length of time the adjusted checks have been in place and supports business during this difficult time.
You will maintain a defence against a civil penalty if the check you have undertaken during this period was done in the prescribed standard manner or as set out in the COVID-19 adjusted checks guidance. However, any individual identified with no lawful immigration status in the UK, may be liable to enforcement action.