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Keepin’ it real: Sponsors’ record-keeping duties just got a bit more sensible

30 November 2016

Following our update on the latest Statement of Changes in the Immigration Rules, we are now updating you on policy changes relating to sponsored workers published by the Home Office on 24 November 2016 and effective from that date:

Following our update on the latest Statement of Changes in the Immigration Rules, we are now updating you on policy changes relating to sponsored workers published by the Home Office on 24 November 2016 and effective from that date:
  1. Sponsors only need to keep documents for the shorter period of either one year from the date the sponsor ends their sponsorship or, if the migrant is no longer sponsored by the sponsor, the point at which a compliance officer has examined and approved them. Previously sponsors had to keep documents for the longer of the two periods for most sponsored migrants so sponsors used to have to wait to have a Home Office audit, before being able to dispose of documents.
  2. The requirement to keep a detailed job description has been replaced with a requirement to keep a copy of the contents of the advert that includes the job title, main duties and responsibilities, skills, qualifications and experience needed together with an indication of salary package or salary range and the closing date for applications. Therefore, it is fine for a job description to be contained in the body of the advert. Previously, a separate job description was required. The reasoning behind this was so that the Home Office could compare the advert with the company job description. A job description is still required on file where no Resident Labour Market Test was undertaken.
  3. Whilst employers are still required to keep all applications shortlisted for final interview, they are not required to keep notes for all EEA nationals who were rejected. The guidance now requires “interview notes” for each settled worker who was rejected. Settled workers includes EEA nationals, British nationals and those with Indefinite Leave to Remain. If you have not interviewed EEA national workers you are not required to retain reasons why they did not meet the requirements of the post.

There is also a change relating to start dates: the start date on a Certificate of Sponsorship may be pushed back by no more than 4 weeks via a sponsor note on the Sponsor Management System. If the individual is unpaid for more than 4 weeks from the original start date you cannot continue to sponsor them.

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