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HMRC internal manual

Tax Credits Technical Manual

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Entitlement: Residence rules - Right to reside: The Workers Registration Scheme (WRS)

The Accession (Immigration and Worker) Regulations 2004

IMPORTANT NOTE: The Workers Registration Scheme (WRS) ended on 30 April 2011, this means:

  • A8 national claimants are not required to be in registered employment if their award period starts on or after 1 May 2011.

Unless otherwise exempt, A8 nationals were required to be in registered employment for any award periods prior to 1 May 2011. This applies even where the date of the decision to make the award is after 1 May 2011.For all awards prior to 1 May 2011 the following groups of A8 nationals were required to register their employment with the WRS:-

  • all A8 nationals who took up new employment in the United Kingdom on or after 1 May 2004;
  • nationals of A8 countries who are dependents of A8 workers who arrived in the United Kingdom on or after 1 May 2004 and who wish to work in the UK;
  • part-time workers who are nationals of A8 countries;
  • students who are working; and
  • short-term and temporary workers who are employed by a labour provider.

An A8 national who was working in the United Kingdom and required to register their employment with the WRS but did not do so, did not have a right to reside in the United Kingdom as a worker - but that does not necessarily mean they did not have a right to reside on other grounds. For example, provided the A8 national was deemed to be self sufficient, they would have a right to reside in the United Kingdom as a ‘qualified person’.

The following A8 nationals were not required to register with the WRS:-

  • self-employed workers;
  • A8 nationals who were working legally in the United Kingdom for 12 months or more in the employment they were in on 1 May 2004;
  • A8 nationals who were working legally in the United Kingdom and who stayed in the same job after 1 May 2004;
  • A8 nationals who were issued with leave to enter the United Kingdom before 1 May 2004 as a seasonal agricultural worker and took up employment on the Seasonal Agricultural Workers Scheme on or after that date;
  • A8 nationals who are providing services in the United Kingdom on behalf of an employer who is not establish in the United Kingdom;
  • A8 nationals who are family members of a Swiss or an European Economic Area (EEA) national (other than one of the A8 countries or United Kingdom) who is working in the United Kingdom;
  • A8 nationals who are also citizens (dual nationals) of the United Kingdom, Switzerland or another EEA country, other than the A8 states;
  • A8 nationals who are family members of a Swiss or EEA national (other than one of the A8 countries or the United Kingdom) who is living in the United Kingdom as a student or a retired or a self-sufficient person; and
  • A8 nationals who were granted indefinite leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom.

A worker from one of the A8 countries who worked legally for a period of 12 months or more without interruption (i.e. periods of unemployment must not total more than 30 days in any 12 month period) was entitled to full free movement rights under the treaty of Accession and no longer required to register their employment.