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Right to Work Checks – October 2023

It is of utmost importance for employers to perform proper and compliant right to work (RTW) checks to confirm an individual’s right to work before they commence their employment.

The UK government guidance on right to work checks, if implemented correctly, provides a statutory excuse (legal protection) against an illegal working civil penalty if found to be employing illegal workers in the UK.

The UK Government announced plans to raise fines for employers who hire individuals without legal immigration status.

The Home Secretary announced these forthcoming changes, which are scheduled to be implemented in early 2024, although the exact start date remains uncertain. Currently, the fine for employing someone without the right to work is £20,000 per illegal worker. Under the new rules, this fine will increase to a maximum of £45,000 for first-time offenders, and for repeat offenders, the maximum fine will rise to £60,000 per illegal worker employed.

These substantial fine increases will significantly impact the cashflow and operations of businesses found to be in violation of these rules. Employers must take steps to ensure full compliance with the requirements for conducting right-to-work checks.

In compliance with the Home Office guidance on RTW checks, there are three ways to conduct RTW checks:

  • Manual Right to Work checks
  • Digital Right to Work checks
  • Online Right to Work checks

Selecting the appropriate method for each employee depends on various factors, including the employee’s nationality and immigration status. Employers should make every effort to assisting individuals in providing proof of their right to work.

Manual Right to Work Checks

Manual checks involve meeting the individual in person and verifying their physical documents. If in-person verification is not possible, employers can perform online checks on the Home Office website.

Employers must follow three steps before an individual starts working:

  1. Obtain: Collect original documents from the candidate
  2. Check: Verify the authenticity of the documents and ensure the person is authorised to do the work
  3. Copy: Maintain an unaltered copy of each document securely during employment and for two additional years

Online Right to Work Checks

Online checks can be done using the Home Office’s online service. However, not all prospective workers can be checked online. Some may lack eligible immigration status, and in such cases, manual checks are required.

Rebecca Hone

Senior Associate

View profile

+44 20 7539 8019

Monica Mastropasqua

Paralegal

View profile

+44 20 7539 8021

These different methods and requirements help employers ensure that their employees have the legal right to work in the UK, while also preventing discrimination and maintaining compliance with the law.

Digital Right to Work Checks

From 6 April 2022, employers can conduct remote digital checks for British and Irish citizens with British/Irish passports or Irish passport cards. These checks use Identity Document Validation Technology (IDVT) to confirm identity. Employers must ensure they comply with all statutory requirements for these checks to obtain a statutory excuse. If an IDSP (Identity Document Validation Service Provider) is used, the employer must check a digital copy of a physical document to confirm its validity and ownership.

Employer Checking Service

For individuals who cannot provide valid documentation or use online checks due to pending applications or appeals, the Home Office provides a free online service that employers can use to conduct Right to Work checks.

These different methods and requirements help employers ensure that their employees have the legal right to work in the UK, while also preventing discrimination and maintaining compliance with the law.

Third Party Checks

Since April 2022, employers have the option to delegate right-to-work checks to IDSPs for British and Irish passport holders and valid Irish passport card holders. It is crucial to understand that outsourcing these checks does not shift the legal responsibility to the third party. The IDSPs must perform the checks according to legal requirements, however, a business will remain accountable for ensuring that the checks are conducted correctly and that the digital check matches the employee’s identity when they start working.

While outsourcing this task might seem convenient, it can introduce complexities that affect the entire business. Therefore, it is imperative for organisations, particularly HR departments and senior management, to stay updated with Right to Work regulations and ensure thorough checks of each individual’s identity and right to work status.

Employer Support

Here at Clarkslegal, we provide right to work training and a right to work check verification service to minimise exposure to risk, please get in touch with our UK Immigration Team should you require further help.

About this article

Disclaimer
This information is for guidance purposes only and should not be regarded as a substitute for taking legal advice. Please refer to the full General Notices on our website.

Rebecca Hone

Senior Associate

View profile

+44 20 7539 8019

Monica Mastropasqua

Paralegal

View profile

+44 20 7539 8021

About this article

Immigration Fee Surcharge – October 2023

Fees categoryCurrent FeeNew Fee from 4th October 2023 Fee Change
Visit visa – short up to 6 months£100£115£15
Visit visa – long up to 2 years£376£400£24
Visit visa – long up to 5 years£670£771£101
Visit visa – long up to 10 years£837£963£126
Visiting academic – more than 6 months but no more than 12 months£200£200£0
Private medical treatment visa – more than 6 months but not more than 11 months£200£200£0
Transit visa (direct airside transit)£35£35£0
Transit visit visa (landside transit)£64£64£0
Visa for the purpose of joining a ship or aircraft as a member of the crew of that ship or aircraft£64£64£0
Electronic Visa Waiver£30£30£0
Single-entry visa to replace a Biometric Residence Permit (BRP)£154£154£0
Certificate of Entitlement Nationality Right of Abode (outside the UK)£388£388£0
Transfer of Conditions (Vignette Transfer) application made overseas£154£154£0
Other visa£531£637£106
Hong Kong British National (Overseas) for 30 months – main applicant and dependants£180£180£0
Hong Kong British National (Overseas) for 5 years – main applicant and dependants£250£250£0
Route to Settlement£1538£1846£308
Route to Settlement – other dependant relative£3250£3250£0
Route to Settlement – refugee dependant relative£388£404£16
Indefinite leave to enter the UK as the dependant of a member of the armed forces under Appendix Armed Forces to the Immigration Rules£2404£2885£481
Indefinite leave to enter the UK as a foreign or Commonwealth citizen discharged from HM Forces under paragraph 13 of Appendix Armed Forces to the immigration rules£2404£2885£481
Call out/ out of hours fee (per hour/part hour) – service of consular officers£142£142£0
Receiving, preparing and forwarding documents – consular functions£141£141£0
Administrative review£80£80£0
Fees categoryCurrent FeeNew Fee from 4th October 2023 Fee Change
Innovator Founder – main applicant and dependants£1036£1191£155
Endorsement fee under Innovator Founder route (payable to endorsing body) excluding VAT£1000£1000£0
Start-up – main applicant and dependants£378£435£57
Approval letter from a competent body in respect of an initial application for Global Talent£456£524£68
Global Talent – main applicant – where Approval Letter is required£167£192£25
Global Talent – main applicant – where Approval Letter is not required£623£716£93
Global Talent – dependants only£623£716£93
Tier 1 (Exceptional Talent) – dependants only£623£716£93
Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) – dependants only£1036£1191£155
Tier 1 (Investor) – main applicant and dependants£1638£1884£246
Skilled worker, where a certificate of sponsorship has been issued for three years or less – main applicant and dependants£625£719£94
Skilled Worker, where a certificate of sponsorship has been issued for over three years – main applicant and dependants£1235£1420£185
Skilled Worker – shortage occupation where a certificate of sponsorship has been issued for three years or less – main applicant and dependants£479£551£72
Skilled Worker, shortage occupation where a certificate of sponsorship has been issued for over three years – main applicant and dependants£943£1084£141
Skilled Worker – Health and Care Visa – where a certificate of sponsorship has been issued for three years or less [footnote 2] – main applicant and dependants£247£284£37
Skilled Worker – Health and Care Visa – where a certificate of sponsorship has been issued for over three years [footnote 2] – main applicant and dependants£479£551£72
Skilled Worker – Shortage Occupation – Health and Care Visa – where a certificate of sponsorship has been issued for three years or less [footnote 2] – main applicant and dependants£247£284£37
Skilled Worker – Shortage Occupation – Health and Care Visa – where a certificate of sponsorship has been issued for over three years [footnote 2] – main applicant and dependants£479£551£72
T2 Minister of Religion – main applicant and dependants£625£719£94
International Sportsperson where a certificate of sponsorship has been issued for 12 months or less – main applicant and dependants£259£298£39
International Sportsperson where a certificate of sponsorship has been issued for over 12 months – main applicant and dependants£625£719£94
Temporary Work – Seasonal Worker, Religious Worker, Charity Worker, Creative Worker, International Agreement, Government Authorised Exchange and Youth Mobility Scheme – main applicant and dependants£259£298£39
Representative of an overseas business – main applicant and dependants£625£719£94
Global Business Mobility – Senior or Specialist Worker – up to 3 years – main applicant and dependants£625£719£94
Global Business Mobility – Senior or Specialist Worker – more than 3 years – main applicant and dependants£1235£1420£185
Global Business Mobility – Graduate Trainee – main applicant and dependants£259£298£39
Global Business Mobility – Service Supplier – main applicant and dependants£259£298£39
Global Business Mobility – UK Expansion Worker – main applicant and dependants£259£298£39
Global Business Mobility – Secondment Worker – main applicant and dependants£259£298£39
Scale-up – main applicant and dependants£715£822£107
High Potential Individual – main applicant and dependants£715£822£107
Fees categoryCurrent FeeNew Fee from 4th October 2023 Fee Change
Student – main applicant and dependants£490£490£0
Child student£490£490£0
Fees categoryCurrent FeeNew Fee from 4th October 2023 Fee Change
Priority Visa service – Settlement£573£500-£73
Priority Visa service – Non-Settlement£250£500£250
Super Priority Visa service£956£1000£44
User Pays Visa Application service£55£76.50£21.50
The provision of an immigration officer to provide any premium service relating to entry into or transit through the United Kingdom (per hour per officer)£77.40£77.40£0
International Contact Centre – Email Service (per query)£2.74£2.74£0
International Contact Centre – Telephone Helpline (per minute)£0.69£0.69£0
Fees categoryCurrent FeeNew Fee from 4th October 2023 Fee Change
Super Priority service£800£1000£200
Expedited processing – Priority service£500£500£0
On-Demand service (Mobile Biometric Enrolment) (per hour per representative of the contractor providing the service)£650£650£0
The provision of an immigration officer to deliver any premium service, to a Government Department, relating to entry into or transit through the United Kingdom£57.33£57.33£0
The provision of an immigration officer to deliver any premium service, relating to entry into or transit through the United Kingdom (per hour per officer)£77.40£77.40£0
Premium status checks and advice – Administrative Officer (per minute)£0.80£0.80£0
Premium status checks, advice or training – Executive Officer (inside office hours) (per minute)£0.88£0.88£0
Premium status checks, advice or training – Executive Officer (outside office hours) (per minute)£1.10£1.10£0
Premium status checks, advice or training – Higher Executive Officer (inside office hours) (per minute)£0.97£0.97£0
Premium status checks, advice or training – Higher Executive Officer (outside office hours) (per minute)£1.23£1.23£0
Fees categoryCurrent FeeNew Fee from 4th October 2023 Fee Change
Registered Traveller (Adult) – Yearly Subscription (per year)£50£50£0
Registered Traveller (Child) – Yearly Subscription (per year)£24£24£0
Registered Traveller – Registration of New Documents£20£20£0
Fast Track – Heathrow£5.20£5.20£0
Fast Track – Other ports of entry£3.00£3.00£0
Fees categoryCurrent FeeNew Fee from 4th October 2023 Fee Change
Innovator Founder – main applicant and dependants£1292£1486£194
Endorsement fee under Innovator Founder route (payable to endorsing body) excluding VAT£1000£1000£0
Start-up – main applicant and dependants£508£584£76
Approval letter from a competent body in respect of an initial application for Global Talent£456£524£68
Global Talent – main applicant – where Approval Letter is required£167£192£25
Global Talent – main applicant – where Approval Letter is not required£623£716£93
Global Talent – dependants only£623£716£93
Graduate Route – main applicant and dependants£715£822£107
Tier 1 (Exceptional Talent) – dependants only£623£716£93
Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) – main applicant and dependants£1292£1486£194
Tier 1 (Investor) – main applicant and dependants£1638£1884£246
Skilled Worker, where a certificate of sponsorship has been issued for three years or less – main applicant and dependants£719£827£108
Skilled Worker, where a certificate of sponsorship has been issued for over three years – main applicant and dependants£1423£1500£77
Skilled Worker, shortage occupation where a certificate of sponsorship has been issued for three years or less – main applicant and dependants£479£551£72
Skilled Worker, shortage occupation where a certificate of sponsorship has been issued for over three years – main applicant and dependants£943£1084£141
Skilled Worker – Health and Care Visa – where a certificate of sponsorship has been issued for three years or less – main applicant and dependants£247£284£37
Skilled Worker – Health and Care Visa – where a certificate of sponsorship has been issued for over three years – main applicant and dependants£479£551£72
Skilled Worker – Shortage Occupation – Health and Care Visa – where a certificate of sponsorship has been issued for three years or less – main applicant and dependants£247£284£37
Skilled Worker – Shortage Occupation –Health and Care Visa – where a certificate of sponsorship has been issued for over three years – main applicant and dependants£479£551£72
T2 Minister of Religion – main applicant and dependants£719£827£108
International Sportsperson where a certificate of sponsorship has been issued for 12 months or less – main applicant and dependants£259£298£39
International Sportsperson where a certificate of sponsorship has been issued for over 12 months – main applicant and dependants£719£827£108
Temporary Worker – Seasonal Worker, Religious Worker, Charity Worker, Creative Worker, International Agreement Worker, Government Authorised Exchange Worker and Youth Mobility Scheme – main applicant and dependants£259£298£39
Representative of an overseas business – main applicant and dependants£719£827£108
Global Business Mobility – Senior or Specialist Worker – up to 3 years – main applicant and dependants£719£827£108
Global Business Mobility – Senior or Specialist Worker – more than 3 years – main applicant and dependants£1423£1500£77
Global Business Mobility – Graduate Trainee – main applicant and dependants£259£298£39
Global Business Mobility – Service Supplier – main applicant and dependants£259£298£39
Global Business Mobility – UK Expansion Worker – main applicant and dependants£259£298£39
Global Business Mobility – Secondment Worker – main applicant and dependants£259£298£39
Scale-up – main applicant and dependants£715£822£107
High Potential Individual – main applicant and dependants£715£822£107
Fees categoryCurrent FeeNew Fee from 4th October 2023 Fee Change
Student – main applicant and dependants£363£490£127
Child Student£363£490£127
Short term student studying English language for more than 6 months but not more than 11 months£200£200£0
Fees categoryCurrent FeeNew Fee from 4th October 2023 Fee Change
Visitor Extension – main applicant and dependants£1000£1000£0
Leave to enter for persons in the UK who are liable to immigration detention£1048£1258£210
Leave to remain– Other£1048£1048£0
Hong Kong British National (In-country) for 30 months – main applicant and dependants£180£180£0
Hong Kong British National (In-country) for 5 years – main applicant and dependants£250£250£0
Processing an application which is subsequently rejected as invalid£25£25£0
Indefinite leave to remain – main applicants and dependants£2404£2885£481
Replacement Biometric Residence Card (issued under the EU Settlement Scheme) which has been lost, stolen, damaged or destroyed£19£19£0
Replacement Biometric Residence Permit which has been lost, stolen, damaged or destroyed£19£19£0
Travel Document – Certificate of travel – adult£280£280£0
Travel Document – Certificate of travel – child£141£141£0
Travel Document – Convention travel document – adult£75£82£7
Travel Document – Convention travel document – child£49£53£4
Administrative Review£80£80£0
Life in the UK test£50£50£0
Fees categoryCurrent FeeNew Fee from 4th October 2023 Fee Change
Naturalisation (British citizenship)£1250£1500£250
Naturalisation British overseas territory citizens£1000£1000£0
Nationality registration as a British citizen – adult£1126£1351£225
Nationality registration as a British citizen – child£1012£1214£202
The arrangement of a citizenship ceremony (including the administration of a citizenship oath and pledge at the ceremony).£80£80£0
The administration of a citizenship oath, or oath and pledge where the oath, or oath and pledge, are not administered at a citizenship ceremony or by a justice of the peace.£5£5£0
Nationality registration – British overseas territory citizen, British overseas citizens, British Subjects, British protected persons – adult£901£901£0
Nationality registration – British overseas territory citizen, British overseas citizens, British Subjects, British protected persons – child£810£810£0
Renunciation of nationality£372£372£0
Certificate of Entitlement Nationality Right of Abode (In the UK)£372£372£0
Nationality review£372£372£0
Status Letter (Nationality)£250£250£0
Non-acquisition Letter (Nationality)£250£250£0
Nationality correction to certificate£250£250£0
Nationality – supply of a certified copy of a notice, certificate, order or declaration£250£250£0
Nationality reissued Certificate£250£250£0
Fees categoryCurrent FeeNew Fee from 4th October 2023 Fee Change
Premium Sponsor Service (12 months) Worker sponsor and Temporary worker sponsor – large sponsors£25000£25000£0
Premium Sponsor Service (12 months) Worker sponsor and Temporary worker sponsor – small sponsors£8000£8000£0
Premium Sponsor Service (12 months) Student sponsors£8000£8000£0
The expedited processing of a sponsorship management request made by a Worker sponsor or Temporary worker sponsor£200£200£0
Priority service for expedited processing of sponsor licence applications£500£500£0
Worker sponsor licence (large sponsor )£1476£1476£0
Worker sponsor licence (small sponsor)£536£536£0
Student sponsor licence£536£536£0
Temporary Worker sponsor licence£536£536£0
Worker and Temporary Worker sponsor licence (large sponsor)£1476£1476£0
Worker and Student sponsor licence (large sponsor)£1476£1476£0
Worker, Temporary Worker and Student sponsor licence (large sponsor)£1476£1476£0
Temporary Worker and Student sponsor licence£536£536£0
Worker sponsor licence (large sponsor), where sponsor currently holds a Temporary Worker and/or Student Sponsor Licence£940£940£0
Endorsement fee for a Scale-up sponsor licence under Endorsing Body Pathway (payable to the endorsing body) excluding VAT£1500£1500£0
Student sponsor basic compliance assessment£536£536£0
Sponsor action plan£1476£1476£0
Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS): Skilled Worker, T2 Minister of Religion, Global Business Mobility – Senior or Specialist Worker£199£239£40
Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) – Temporary Worker including Global Business Mobility – Graduate Trainee, UK Expansion Worker, Service Supplier and Secondment Worker route, and Scale-up route£21£25£4
Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) for International Sportsperson route – Over 12 Months£199£239£40
Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) for International Sportsperson route – Up to 12 months or less£21£25£4
Confirmation of Acceptance for Study (CAS) for student, child student£21£25£4

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