In an increasingly interconnected world, businesses are now more than ever seeking to harness international talent by recruiting skilled workers from overseas. However, with the complexities of immigration regulations and continuously evolving legal requirements, recruiting from abroad demands careful planning and adherence to the law.
If you’re a business looking to recruit from abroad, there are many considerations to be taken into account. In this blog, we will delve into some of the details to give you an insight into the key things you need to know!
Home Office Sponsorship License
When recruiting from abroad your business is required to adhere to certain requirements and go through an application process. But before proceeding further, it is extremely important that your business is in possession of a Home Office sponsorship license. This license establishes your business’s eligibility to sponsor non-UK workers and is typically an essential part of the process. While for most immigration routes it is necessary to have this sponsorship, particular pathways don’t require a sponsor license, for example, the Global Talent route, which encompasses skilled workers in areas such as humanities, sciences, engineering, arts and digital technology.
Once your business has acquired a Home Office Sponsorship License you must ensure that the job or jobs you are offering are equivalent to an RQF3 level (A-Level) or above, offering a minimum salary of £26,200 per year or equivalent. Again, there are some exceptions to this, but the criteria can be complex and changeable so you will need to ensure you are very clear about how these apply to the job in question and to your particular business.
Right to Work Checks
In order to safeguard your business against legal risks, undertaking thorough right to work checks is paramount. This involves verifying that job applicants are legally allowed to work in the UK, as failure to do so can lead to legal trouble for both your business and the relevant employee later on in their employment. This will require checking all relevant documents, such as passports, visas and residence permits. It is your businesses responsibility to ensure their eligibility to work in this country before extending an offer of employment. Home Office audits are also becoming more common and may go into much more detail than the original licence application, looking at how you manage your recruitment process and ongoing HR procedures. Therefore, you should start the process with the possibility of such an audit in mind. The consequences of failing such an audit, both for your business and the individual employees can be very serious.
It is equally important for your business to adhere to anti-discrimination laws. It is legally and ethically unacceptable to discriminate against potential employees based on the country they were born in. Your business should promote equality and fairness.
Limited Right to Work Checks
If you take on employees with a limited right to work, such as those with time-limited visas, you will need to continue re-checking their documents after the initial right to work check has been completed. It is important to have a system in place where you make regular checks up until their right to work expires. This will ensure your business is continuously compliant when it comes to the ever-changing rules.
Recruiting employees from abroad is a strategic move for any business that can bring great value and with the right support and advice you can navigate the complex UK immigration system successfully and keep up to date with the requirements. Here at AmicusLaw we have a specialist immigration law team dedicated to guiding your business through the intricate and often time-consuming process of international recruitment and sticking with you throughout the process. Get in touch with our team today – We’re on your side!