By Amy Drake, Employment Solicitor
The transitional period has ended and the UK has now left the EU. This means that from 1 January 2021, the UK’s participation in EU free movements ends.
It is vital that employers prepare and foresee how they might face certain scenarios, and we have put together six practical steps to prepare your business for the new rules:
- Provide training to managers and HR individuals to understand their obligations under the new immigration rules, such as right to work checks, as employers have an obligation to check their employees have a right to work in the UK.
- Identify and compile a list of employees who are EU citizens and who may be affected by Brexit. It is important for employers to maintain a level of communication surrounding Brexit. Employers can do this by keeping employees up to date about Brexit by creating an information sheet or hold drop in sessions.
- Understand the EU settlement Scheme and how it works. If you have employees that are EU, EEA or Swiss citizens, they are able to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme to continue living in the UK after 30 June 2021. The individual must usually have started living in the UK by 31 December 2020, in order to apply.
- Review your workflow planning and recruitment needs. Establish if there will be a need to sponsor individuals and determine the costs of this.
- Familiarise yourselves with the new Home Office point-based immigration system that will operate as the legal framework for how EU and other overseas nationals may come and live and work in the UK. There are two main routes for EEA nationals to work for a UK business, either as skilled workers (must have a job offer, speak English, a salary of over £25,600) or as intra-company transfers. For both routes, the employer must obtain a sponsor licence.
- Review and update documents such as employment contracts, policies and offer letters in accordance with the new rules.
For more information regarding Employment Law and legal advice, please visit Healys’ website.