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Following the Recruitment and Employment Confederation’s letter to the Home Office, the department has now confirmed that digital Right to Work checks will remain in place until 5th April 2022. 

The Home Office has stated that digital Right to Work Checks will now be retained until 5th April 2022.

This comes after the department initially reported that in-person checks would be reinstated from 1st September, ending temporary measures adopted throughout the pandemic.

However, responding to a letter from the REC, the Home Office stated that the Government has been undertaking a review of specialist technology which could support the permanent implementation of digital Right to Work checks.

Expressing that this would allow UK and Irish citizens to partake in these checks online, the Home Office eventually hopes to roll out digital checks which also offer enhanced security.

However, in the interim, the department stated it has made the decision to defer the date for the end of the adjusted checks to 5th April 2022.

This, it hopes, will enable the conclusions of the review to be finalised as well as ensuring the Right to Work Scheme continues to operate in a manner which supports employers to implement long-term, post-pandemic working practices.

From 6th April 2022, employers will be expected to be in possession of original documents as opposed to scanned copies.

Presenting its case to the Home Office yesterday, the REC urged for the extension of digital Right to Work checks beyond September. It argued this could keep remote job opportunities accessible to those from rural areas as well as aid in staff shortages.

Chief Executive of the REC, Neil Carberry, called this “great news for recruiters and hiring businesses all over the country”:

Digital right to work checks have been a resounding success during the pandemic, allowing companies to hire quickly and safely as well as improving compliance.

It makes complete sense to extend their use, especially considering the unprecedented labour shortages we are experiencing now.

This move comes on the back of extensive campaigning from the REC with our last letter to the Home Office yesterday – linking the need for a delay to helping with worker shortages. We look forward to working with them further on a more permanent digital solution.