What is proof of right to work and when do you need it?
In 2022, an estimated 108,000 individuals came to the UK to work, which is a 67% increase compared to the 61,000 people we have later that year. With this data in mind, there are over 1.79 million non-EU nationals working in the country presently. If you are one of them, you are probably wondering what is proof of right to work and when you might need it to avoid immigration mishaps. To help you out, keep on reading.
What Is Proof of Right to Work?
All UK employers are under oath to verify all the working status of employees before they even mark them as employed. Otherwise, employers will face a civil penalty fine of £20,000 per undocumented worker. They may also receive a 28-day period notice and may be publicly mortified by Immigration Enforcement. With this in mind, ensuring proof of the right to work and its acceptable documents is very important.
Ways to Show Proof of Right to Work in the UK
There are several ways to show that you have the proof of right to work in the country including documents (below is the list of acceptable documents), sending documents, Home Office checking services, Home Office Immigration status, and asking for help from immigration professionals.
As for the Home Office Immigration status, this one is always part of the hiring process of workers from overseas, thus, requiring it to be part of the licensing application of your proof of right to work. Home Office checking services, on the other hand, allows applicants/employees to share a 9-digit code with the employer so they can check their eligibility to work. You can easily get a share code online.
Providing paperwork is one of the most effective ways to show proof of right to work. Here are the acceptable documents you can present.
National Identity Card showing that you are a citizen of an EEA country or Switzerland
Permanent Resident Card
Biometric Immigration Document
Immigration Status Document
Birth or Adoption Certificate
Certificate of Registration or Naturalization
Certificate of Application (must be less than 6 months old)
Reasonable evidence or if you are a family member of an EEA national
When do you need proof of right to work?
You need proof of right to work in the UK if you are about to work for an employer licensed to do business in the country. The British Government requires employers to clarify and check their employees as to whether they are fit to work or not, legal-wise.
If it happens that you cannot present proof of right to work, the only way to continue working is by relying on the Home Office’s Employer Checking Services.
For instance, if the applicant or employee has an outstanding appeal, an application registration card, a Certificate of Application, and a Commonwealth citizen, they may continue in gainful employment with the temporary absence of proof of right to work.
After 14 days, the employer must contact the Home Office again for further verification or if there are any updates in regard to the status of the applicant/employee.
As an individual seeking employment or an employer looking to hire, it is crucial to have a thorough understanding of the legal requirements surrounding the right to work. If you want to learn more, contacting legal professionals is the best way to avoid potential legal complications.
New Immigration Application Fees from 4th October 2023