Right to Work Checks

Right to Work Checks

What are Right to Work (RTW) checks?

As an employer, you are under an obligation carry out RTW checks in order to prevent illegal working. You are prohibited from employing anybody in your business who does not have the right to work in the UK or who is in breach of their conditions to stay in the UK. Employing illegal workers is a civil offence (if committed negligently) or a criminal offence (if committed knowingly) and carries considerable penalties.

You must therefore carry out a right to work check before an employee begins working for you and keep a record of the checks made.

These checks must be carried out for all workers regardless of their nationality in order to avoid indirect discrimination.

To avoid any liabilities, employers should take the following steps to ensure that prospective employees have the right to work in the UK:

  • obtain an original document (in accordance with the Home Office’s approved list) which establishes the individual’s right to work and check its validity in the presence of the holder.
  • make a copy of and securely retain the appropriate documentation and make a note of the date the check was carried out, as well as of the date(s) repeat checks must be made
  • retain the relevant documents and records for the duration of the individual’s employment and for an additional 2 years after they have left your employment.

If you are an employer or employee and have any queries about anything mentioned in this article, please do not hesitate to get in touch for a free 15-minute telephone consultation.

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