Right to work checks: how to conduct the check
Produced in partnership with Duncan Bain of Penningtons Manches
Right to work checks: how to conduct the check

The following Immigration guidance note Produced in partnership with Duncan Bain of Penningtons Manches provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Right to work checks: how to conduct the check
  • Conducting a manual right to work check
  • Step 1—Obtain
  • Step 2—Check
  • Photograph
  • Date of Birth
  • Any other reasonable steps to check the rightful owner of the document
  • Step 3—Copy
  • Conducting an online right to work check
  • Students
  • more

This Practice Note looks at what employers need to do in order to carry out a ‘right to work check’ correctly, including the main steps that should be taken for both online and manual checks, record-keeping requirements and preparing for repeat checks.

This Practice Note sets out the procedure for right to work checks which came into effect on 16 May 2014 (and as subsequently amended). To review whether a historical check was conducted correctly, ie so as to check if a statutory excuse is in place for a particular employee before this date, it is necessary to refer to archived guidance for the indicated periods:

  1. 24 November 2009–15 May 2014: second scheme under IANA 2006—Residence Cards added to Lists

  2. 29 February 2008–23 November 2009: first scheme under IANA 2006

  3. 27 January 1997–28 February 2008 scheme under the Asylum and Immigration Act (as originally enacted) 1996

An employer can carry out a right to work check in one of three ways:

  1. a manual check which involves a physical inspection of specified documents listed in the Immigration (Restrictions on Employment) Order 2007, SI 2007/3290, Sch (also referred to as List A and List B)

  2. seeking confirmation from the Home Office Employer Checking Service in specific circumstances (eg where an individual is unable to produce their right to work documents because of an outstanding Home