Right to work in the UK – guidance for candidates

We have a legal responsibility to ensure that all our employees have the legal right to live and work in the UK. If we make an offer of employment, we will need to check that you are eligible to work in the UK before you start work.

Check if you have the right to live and work in the UK

If you are a citizen from the UK, Switzerland or one of the following European Economic Area (EEA) countries, you currently have the right to work in the UK.

For EEA and Swiss nationals commencing employment from January 2021, you will need to either have successfully applied under the EU Settlement Scheme (EUSS) for settled or pre-settled status or be eligible for a visa under the new UK immigration system. Irish nationals are not required to apply through the EUSS and will continue to have the legal right to work in the UK under the Common Travel Area rights and privileges.

Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain and Sweden.

If you do not have the right to work in the UK

If you do not already have the legal right to work in the UK, you are still welcome to apply for a job with UKRI. We strongly recommend that you use the Home Office website to review the legal requirements of working in the UK as this will give you an indication of whether you may be eligible to work in the UK under the Points Based System (PBS) for immigration.

We will assess all job applications using criteria based on the knowledge, skills and experience needed for the post. It is a condition of any offer of employment we make to you that you have, or gain, permission to work in the UK. By law, you will not be able to start working for us until you are able to provide evidence that this permission has been granted.

If you are made an offer with UKRI and you intend to seek permission to work in the UK via a Tier 2 (General)or Skilled Worker visa, you must first obtain a Certificate of Sponsorship from UKRI. There are requirements that must be met, such as the job being skilled to at least degree level (under Tier 2) or RQF Level 3 (under the Skilled Worker route) and that it meets the minimum salary requirement for the role and any route specific criteria as stated in the Home Office rules.

Why you need to bring evidence of your right to work to your interview

The Immigration Act 2014 requires employers to check documents to establish a person’s eligibility to work in the UK and comply with any restrictions. Under the Act, we are required to check your eligibility before you start work. We ask all candidates to bring proof of their right to work to their interview.

We will take a copy of this proof and, if you are successful at interview, we will keep this document on your personnel file. If you are not successful, we will shred the documents.

Last updated: 12 September 2023

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