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University of Bath

Right to work checks

How to carry out the necessary checks to ensure workers are eligible to work in the UK.

Right to work in the UK

The University is obliged to ensure that all workers are eligible to work in the UK. It is vital that the appropriate checks are completed prior to any work being undertaken, ideally at interview stage.

The checks must be applied equally to all workers to ensure that we remain compliant with our duty to prevent illegal working and at the same time avoid unlawful discrimination.


The University can continue to accept either a passport, national identity card or Online Right to Work Check for EU, EEA and Swiss (excluding Irish) citizens up until 30 June 2021. Where an EU, EEA and Swiss (excluding Irish) citizen has listed their residential address as being outside of the UK on their application form and they will be arriving in the UK on or after 1 January 2021 for the first time, they will need to secure a work visa in advance of travel.

There is no requirement for follow-up right to work checks to be undertaken on any EU, EEA and Swiss citizens who were employed on or before 30 June 2021 (unless the COVID-19 interim right to work check process applies).

Checking identity documents

If you are a University representative (e.g. recruiting manager, their designate, or a member of staff from HR) responsible for checking an individual's right to work documents, you must take all reasonable steps to:

  • check that the document presented is original and valid

  • satisfy yourself that the individual presenting themselves is the individual named in the document

  • check that the documents allow them to do the work in question before the work commences.

1. Obtain documents

The documents you must accept from an individual to demonstrate their right to work are set out in two lists by the Home Office - List A or List B. You must obtain an original document or document combination specified in one of these lists in order to comply with Home Office requirements.

  • List A contains the range of documents which you may accept for an individual who has a permanent right to work in the UK e.g. British/Irish passport, Indefinite Leave to Remain/Settlement. A driving licence, National Insurance Number on its own or in any format or a bill issued by a financial institution or a utility company are not considered acceptable identification documents. There is no requirement to carry out a repeat check for these individuals during their employment (unless there is a break in service or an hourly paid worker moves into a core role).

  • List B contains the range of documents which may be accepted for an individual who has a temporary right to work in the UK. There is a requirement to carry out a repeat check before the individual’s current identification document expires for them to continue working.

If an individual is working at the University on a Skilled Worker Visa, or a Temporary Worker Visa (T5), you must also ask them to provide you with a copy of their current passport for HR to keep on file in addition to their visa (see Point 3 below).

2. Check documents

You can either:

  • check the individual's right to work online if they have a biometric residence permit/card or status under the EU Settlement Scheme by following the guidance here; or

  • check the individual's original documents by following the guidance below

For each document presented, you should:

  • check any photographs are consistent with the appearance of the individual (this means you must see them in person)

  • check any dates of birth listed are consistent across documents and that you are satisfied that these correspond with the appearance of the individual

  • check that the expiry dates of any limited leave to enter or remain in the UK have not passed - e.g. a current valid visa in a current passport or a Biometric Residence Permit which confirms the right to work. An in-date visa in an expired passport does not give the holder a right to work in the UK. Please note that Student / Tier 4 Visa holders who have a right to study may not automatically have a right to work in the UK.

  • check any UK Government endorsements (stamps, visas, etc.) to see if the individual is able to do the type of work you are offering

  • satisfy yourself that the documents are valid and genuine, have not been tampered with and belong to the holder

If the individual gives you two documents which have different names, ask them for a further document to explain the reason for this. The further document could be a marriage/civil partnership certificate, a divorce decree, or on enrolled deed poll.

3. Copy/scan documents

You must make a copy of the relevant page or pages of the document in a format which cannot be subsequently altered. Typically, you should do this by photocopying and/or scanning the documents.

In the case of a passport or other identification document, the following parts must be photocopied and/or scanned:

  • Passports: any page showing the individual’s personal identity details (e.g. name, nationality, date of birth, biometric details and photograph) along with the document expiry date. If the individual is sponsored under a Skilled Worker Visa (including Tier 2) or Temporary Worker Visa (T5), you must make a copy of their most recent entry clearance stamp (a visa to enter the UK) indicating the holder has an entitlement to enter or remain in the UK and undertake the work in question and check that they entered the UK during the validity period of their visa. If they entered before the ‘valid from’ date on their visa, they will not have permission to work for the University. In this case, you should contact your relevant HR Recruitment Co-ordinator who will be able to advise.

  • For any documents other than a passport: the document in full, including both sides of a Biometric Residence Permit, an Application Registration Card and a Residence Card (biometric format).

Each document should be photocopied and/or scanned separately and include the following declaration 'Date on which this right to work check was made'. The declaration must be signed and dated by the individual conducting the check and their name written legibly so it is clear who has completed the check.

Useful information

View this slideshow about document verification to make sure that you:

  • comply with Home Office requirements

  • identify the required documents for compliance

  • correctly complete appropriate passport and other document checks

  • identify any irregularities with documents and contact HR for advice

If you have any questions about document verification, you should contact your relevant HR Recruitment Co-ordinator.

You can also compare identity and travel documents against the archived images published on:

  • PRADO - Public Register of Authentic travel and identity Documents Online; or

  • EdisonTD