The UK has left the EU and from 31 December 2020, free movement of people between the UK and EU will end. Currently, EU citizens have the right to move freely into the UK to
live, work and study here. This will come to an end after the transition period and the UK will introduce a points-based immigration system.
The new system will change the way you hire from the EU and it is important you take the necessary steps to prepare. Anyone you want to recruit from outside the UK, excluding Irish citizens, will need to apply for permission first, and you will need to be registered as a licensed sponsor. Further information can be found below.
The new system will not apply to EU employees already working for you in the UK. EU citizens and their family members living in the UK by 31 December 2020 can apply to the EU Settlement Scheme.
Similarly, EU citizens who are employed, or self- employed in the UK, but live elsewhere, otherwise known as frontier workers, will be able to keep their status if they are frontier working in the UK by 31 December 2020, but they will need to apply for a permit. Irish citizens will not need a frontier worker permit but may apply for one if they wish. Additionally, EU citizens can continue to visit the UK for up to six months without applying for a visa and may also participate in a wid range of activities, including business-related activities, such as events and conferences.
✓ Signpost your current employees to the EU Settlement Scheme
If you employ EU, EEA and Swiss citizens, you can signpost them to the information they need to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme, enabling them to secure their future in the UK. The deadline for applying is 30 June 2021. Find out more at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/eu-settlement-scheme-introduction-for-employers/eu-settlement-scheme-introduction-for-employers.
✓ Comply with the new immigration policies for recruiting from overseas
From 1 January 2021, the UK will introduce a points-based immigration system. EU and non-EU citizens will be treated equally and will need to meet certain requirements to come to the UK to work. If you want to recruit workers from outside the UK from 1 January 2021, you will need to be a licensed sponsor. Registering as a sponsor normally takes eight weeks and fees apply. To find out more about the new system, including how to register as a sponsor, visit: https://pbisemployers.campaign.gov.uk/
✓ Check if a visa or work permit is required to travel to the EU for work purposes and apply if
If you travel to the EU for work purposes from 1 January 2021, you may need a visa or work permit. The country you are travelling to might also ask you to have other additional documents depending
on the activity you perform. This advice may be relevant to anyone travelling to the EU for work purposes: this could include anyone working in the private, public or third sector, for example, professional and business services, manufacturing, charities, or the arts. For more information, visit: https://www.gov.uk/visit-europe-1-january-2021.
Other useful links:
▪ Travel Advice: https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice.
▪ Entry Requirements for providing services and travelling for business to the EU: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/providing-services-to-eea-and-efta-countries-after-eu-exit.
▪ Further Guidance on visiting Europe from 1 January 2021:
▪ Checking passport validity: https://www.gov.uk/checkpassport.
▪ EU Settlement Scheme: https://www.gov.uk/settled-status-eu-citizens-families.
▪ Employer resources for understanding the new points-based immigration system:
▪ Further guidance on frontier working in the UK: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/frontier-workers-in-the-uk-rights-and-status.