The Home Office has published a draft code of practice relating to the prevention of illegal working which is likely to come into effect from 16 May 2014. The main changes to note are as follows:

Abolition of Annual Checks

Employers currently have to carry out annual checks for employees who have permission to work in the UK for a temporary period of time (in addition to the checks that must be carried out before the employment starts). The new code will remove the annual checking requirement and, instead, document checks will be required on expiry of the visa.


The code provides that employers will have a "grace period" of 60 days to carry out fresh document checks following a TUPE transfer. At present, such checks must be carried out within 28 days.

Changes to the List of Acceptable Documents

The new code will update the list of acceptable documents to prove that an employee has permission to work in the UK. Employers should update their policies to reflect this updated list.


Some students have the right to work in the UK for a limited number of hours per week and during holidays. The new code will require employers to request a copy of the student timetable from the student's education sponsor.

To view the draft code, please click here.