Brexit – update (ish)

Ruth and Sairish from the BSHR team attended the Brexit seminar at Blacks Solicitor’s this morning  and it was very useful. Here is the salient details from Ruth, obviously just a precis of the information, not legal advice as we are not solicitors.

Blacks explained what is the Employer’s responsibility and what is the responsibility of the employee. A quick summary below:

 Timeline

  • There will be no changes to immigration until Dec 2020, no matter what deal is made with the EU from this point onwards (end of the transition period for leaving the EU)
  • Later this year (no set date yet) the EU settlement scheme will open. All EU citizens will need to apply for ‘settled’ (5 years residence) or ‘pre-settled’ (under five years residence) status and if they do not do so before 30th June 2021 then they will be living here illegally and have no right to work.
  • Employees must arrive in the UK before 31st December 2020 to qualify for this status and it costs £65. Non-EU family members of EU citizens also qualify for this status.
  • It is the responsibility of the migrant to do this, but their right to work will be invalid after the 30th June 2021.
  • After the December 2020 all new EU workers will have to apply for a visa as the rest of the world do and employers need a sponsor license in order to sponsor the visas with the minimum salary of £30,000. These are generally only high skilled posts.
  • It is likely that they will introduce seasonal visas for aspects such as agricultural work in the summer but there are no set plans for these yet.

Right to work

It is the responsibility of the Employer or us on your behalf to do the correct checks and there is a 5 year sentence for the person carrying out the checks if you knowingly employ someone with no right to work.

  • The penalty is £15,000 per migrant if it is a first time offence for a Company or £20,000 if it has happened before. There are ways to reduce this if you find someone has no right to work and you report them to the Home Office and prove you have clear checks in place.
    If you are found to have illegal workers your sponsor license will be revoked and all sponsored visas will become invalid.
    It is not sufficient to have a photocopy of proof, it must be signed and certified by the person who saw the original document and had it in their hand to inspect.
    If you use a document from List A of the Home Office guide it is valid permanently.
    If you use a document from List B it is valid temporarily and must be checked before it expires or you have no proof of right to work.

I hope this helps give a little clarity on the position we might be facing. If you need further support with HR matters, please contact us.