On the 31 December 2020, following the UK’s withdrawal from the European Union, freedom of movement between the UK and the EU ended.
The UK has subsequently introduced a new points-based immigration system that applies to people arriving in the UK to live, work and/or study from 01 January 2021.
EU, EEA and Swiss citizens moving to the UK to work on or after 01 January 2021 therefore need to obtain a visa in advance. This excludes Irish citizens who can continue to freely enter, live and work in the UK without the need to obtain a visa.
For more information on the UK’s points-based immigration system, please visit: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/uk-points-based-immigration-system-employer-information/the-uks-points-based-immigration-system-an-introduction-for-employers
Until 30 June 2021, all EU, EEA and Swiss citizens can continue to use all current existing acceptable documents to prove their right-to-work in the UK, such as a passport or national identity card.
From 01 July 2021 new right-to-work rules will apply. Although official guidance on this has not yet been released, the Home Office have committed to publishing new guidance on how to conduct right-to-work checks on EU, EEA and Swiss citizens in advance of 30 June 2021.
EU, EEA and Swiss citizens who arrived in the UK by 31 December 2020
EU, EEA and Swiss citizens who were resident in the UK on or before 31 December 2020 can apply to secure their status under the EU Settlement Scheme to continue living, working and/or studying in the UK after 30 June 2021.
Anyone wanting to apply to the scheme must do so before 30 June 2021. More information regarding this can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/settled-status-eu-citizens-families/applying-for-settled-status
Eligible citizens whose applications to the scheme are successful will be granted either a ‘settled’ or pre-settled’ status. The status in which a person receives will depend on how long they have been living in the UK for upon completion of their application.
From 01 July 2021, all EU, EEA and Swiss citizens who have successfully applied to the EU Settlement Scheme will be given online access to their immigration status, which they can use to prove their right-to-work in the UK. This will be done by the individual obtaining a ‘share code’ from the Home Office online service, which they will then provide to their employer, for the employer to access the individual’s immigration status online to conduct the necessary right-to-work checks.
Current guidance suggests that this new process will replace the current acceptable documents that EU citizens who were residing in the UK by 31 December 2020 are able to use to prove their right-to-work, including a passport or national identity card.
Changes to right-to-work and ADVANCE
ADVANCE continue to review latest Home Office guidance and we are committed to ensuring that any required changes to current right-to-work processes are done so in the smoothest way possible, with minimal disruption to you or your workers.
We will communicate any further updates in due course, but in the meantime, should you have any questions, please feel free to contact us.