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In the past six months, we have received an increasing number of queries regarding right to work checks which is not surprising, given the numerous changes in this area. However, we have also been involved in a number of corporate transactions where the target business or businesses have not completed right to work checks on any of their staff, often citing "not relevant to our business" as the reasoning.
This approach raises significant concerns. As a result, we have written this short article as a reminder to all employers that they must complete right to work checks on every new starter, before they commence employment - ideally, before day one of employment or at the very least, before their start time (as confirmed in their contract of employment) on day one of their employment.
Failure to perform right to work checks could result in unwanted Home Office scrutiny and serious ramifications, including but not limited to:
It is therefore vital for businesses to ensure they are completing right to work checks before employment commences and that those checks are completed correctly.
Employers conducting right to work checks should follow the latest guidance which was updated on 6 April 2022 and can be found here. There is also an employer's right to work checklist which acts as a helpful aid memoire and can be found here. For details of the key changes to the guidance from 6 April 2022, please see our March update.
In summary, the key changes were as follows:
If you have any questions about conducting right to work checks or have general business immigration queries, please do get in contact with Gemma Robinson or Laura Coombs.