The right to work checks concession has been extended – what does this mean for your organisation?

With less than one week to go until the Covid-19 adjusted right to work checks were due to end, the Home Office has announced today that these measures will be extended until 5 April 2022 (inclusive).

In recent months we have been lobbying the Home Office via Immigration Law Practitioners’ Association to request a delay to the ‘in-person’ right to work checks and asked for the adjusted checks to remain in place until we have a permanent digital solution for conducting checks. This announcement is welcome news for organisations as the adjusted checks had been a resounding success during the pandemic. Not only did the checks speed up the onboarding process but they enabled organisations to remain agile whilst adjusting to the new normal of blended working.

What’s the process for conducting right to work checks now?

Until 5 April 2022, right to work checks can be carried out in one of three ways:

  • Manually checking the individual’s original documents; or
  • Checking the individual’s right to work online; or
  • Covid-19 adjusted measures.

How do you conduct a manual right to work check?

  • You must obtain an original of one or more of the acceptable documents.
  • These must be checked in the presence of the individual (either in person or via live video link) to ensure the details are consistent, match the individual and show they have the right to work for you.
  • You must make and keep copies of the documents along with a record of the date the check was conducted.

How do you conduct an online right to work check?

  • You can use the Home Office online right to work checking service:
  • This service supports Biometric Residence Permits (‘BRPs’), Biometric Residence Cards (‘BRCs’), status under the EUSS, status under the points-based immigration system, BNO visas and frontier worker permits.
  • Individuals must first view their own profile online. They may then choose to share this with you by providing a share code directly or by sharing through the service, in which case you will receive an email containing it.
  • The share code will allow you to view the individual’s right to work information when entered with their date of birth on the equivalent employer portal.
  • You must be satisfied that the online check confirms the individual has the right to work for you and that the photograph is of that individual. This should be done either in person or over a live link.
  • A clear copy of this page must be retained.

How do you conduct a Covid-19 adjusted right to work check?

  • You must obtain scanned copies or photos of on or more of the acceptable documents via email or a mobile app.
  • Arrange a video call with the individual and ask them to hold up the original documents. Check these documents against the copies sent.
  • You must record the date you made the check on the copy of the documents. Mark this as “adjusted check undertaken on [insert date] due to Covid-19” and state the name and position of the document checker.

Retrospective right to work checks are not required where organisations had conducted a Covid-19 adjusted check between 30 March 2020 and 5 April 2022 (inclusive).

What does the future hold for right to work checks?

The Home Office has indicated that they intend to introduce a new digital solution to incorporate those who are not eligible for online checks, such as British and Irish citizens. What this process fully looks like, remains to be seen.

For more information on the topics raised in this briefing, please contact Chetal Patel, Partner or Aisha Choudhry, Associate in our immigration department.


This information is necessarily of a general nature and doesn’t constitute legal advice. This is not a substitute for formal legal advice, given in the context of full information under an engagement with Bates Wells.

All content on this page is correct as of August 26, 2021.