The government has announced that the temporary adjustments to right to work checks, enabling them to be carried out online, have been extended until April 5 2022 (inclusive). The extension follows positive feedback about the ability to perform the checks remotely.
The adjustments, which were introduced on March 30 2020 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, mean that employers carrying out right to work checks can perform them via video calls. Existing workers or job applicants can now send, via email, scanned or photographed versions of documents required for the checks, as opposed to originals. Should someone be unable to provide such documents, employers can use the Home Office Employer Checking Service.
Employers using the adjusted right to work checks must ask workers to submit scanned or photographed versions of the original documents via email or a mobile app. They must then schedule a video call, during which they ask the workers to hold the original documents up to the camera.
These are then checked these against the digital copy and the employer records the date on which the check was made and marks it with “adjusted check undertaken on [insert date] due to COVID-19”.
In the case of workers or applicants with a Biometric Residence Permit, Biometric Residence Card or with settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme or UK points-based immigration scheme, employers can utilise the online right to work checking service to check the applicant’s details during a video call (with the applicant’s permission).
The government says it has initiated a review regarding the availability of technology to run a future system of digital right to work checks, with the intention of introducing a new solution to include those who cannot use the Home Office’s online checking system. This would enable employers to continue to perform checks remotely while enhancing security.
Author: Steven English