Employer right to work checks - New Regulations from 6th April 2022

From 6th April 2022 new regulations enable Employers to use Identification Document Validation Technology (IDVT) service providers to digitally verify the identify of British and Irish citizens with valid passports (or Irish passport cards) for the purpose of right to work checks. This is an alternative to conducting a manual check.

Two associated revised codes of practice will also come into force on 6th April 2022.

1. New Regulations enabling digital identity checks

The Immigration (Restrictions on Employment and Residential Accomodation) (Prescribed Requirements and Codes of Practice) and Licensing Act 2003 (Personal and Premises Licences) (Forms), etc, Regulations 2022 (SI 2022/242) (Regulations) were made on 7th March 2022 and come into force on 6th April 2022. Please find the full regulations here

Employers must check the immigration status of prospective employees to ascertain whether they have the right to work in the UK. From 6th April 2022, Employers may use IDVT to verify the identity of British and Irish citizens with valid passports (or Irish passport cards) as opposed to conducting a manual right to work check.

Regulation 8:

If using an IDVT the Employer must:
• Obtain a clear copy of the IDVT check AND the document checked in an unalterable format
• Reasonably belive that the IDVT service provider has complied with various obligations (6A (1))
• Be satisfied that the photograph in the completed IDVT identity check is the employee
• Retain a clear copy of the IDVT check and the documents checked for at least 2 years after the employment has come to an end.

These steps are necessary for an Employer to have completed in order to protect themsleves if found to be employing an illegal worker. If these steps are followed, an Employer will gain a statutory excuse and thus be protected from paying a civil penalty.

Regulation 5:

Various documents have been removed from the list of acceptable documents for right to work checks from 6th April 2022, including Biometric cards. Holders of Biometric cards must, from 6th April 2022, use these to access the Home Office online right to work checking service in order to evidence their right to work in the UK.

2. New Codes of Practice

Please see the revised Code of practice on preventing illegal working: Civil penalty scheme for employers here

Please see the revised Code of practice for employers: Avoiding unlawful discrimination while preventing illegal working here

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