Information for employers on employing EU, EEA and Swiss citizens in the UK, covering right to work checks, the EU Settlement Scheme and the UK’s new immigration system.
Checking an EU citizen job applicant’s right to work
Because of coronavirus (COVID-19) there are temporary changes to the way you can check documents. Read guidance about the adjusted process, including asking for documents digitally, making checks on a video call, and what to do if someone cannot provide any accepted documents.
You’ll need to check a job applicant’s right to work in the same way as now until 30 June 2021.
Until this date job applicants can prove their right to work in the following ways:
- EU, EEA or Swiss citizens can use their passport or national identity card
- non-EU, EEA or Swiss citizen family members can use an immigration status document listed in the right to work checks employer guide
- EU, EEA and Swiss citizens and their family members can use the online right to work checking service
If an applicant uses the online checking service this will generate a share code. You must then use the employers’ online service to check their right to work using this share code.
You have a duty not to discriminate against EU, EEA or Swiss citizens. You cannot require them to show you their status under the EU Settlement Scheme until after 30 June 2021.
Irish citizens will continue to prove their right to work in the UK as they do now.
UK points-based immigration system
A new immigration system applies to people arriving in the UK from 1 January 2021. EU citizens moving to the UK to work need to get a visa in advance.
EU citizens applying for a skilled worker visa need to show they have a job offer from an approved employer sponsor to be able to apply.
Employers need a sponsor licence to hire most workers from outside the UK.
You can find more information on the UK’s points-based immigration system on GOV.UK.
EU Settlement Scheme
EU, EEA or Swiss citizens and their family members who lived in the UK by 31 December 2020 need to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme to continue living in the UK after 30 June 2021.
You may want to share information with your employees about the EU Settlement Scheme using our employer toolkit.