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Important Update: Reporting Duties for Hybrid Workers

Feb 12, 2024

Employers must now report any changes to the work location of their sponsored workers to the UK authorities within 10 working days.

This guidance comes after the UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) department, part of the Home Office, recently released updated guidelines for sponsors. These guidelines include specific instructions on reporting duties for hybrid and home workers, which is a first of its kind.

According to the new guidance, employers must notify UKVI if there are any changes to a sponsored worker's normal work location, as stated on their certificate of sponsorship.

The reporting duty applies if the worker will be working remotely from home on a permanent or full-time basis with little or no requirement to physically attend a workplace. It also applies if the worker has moved or will be moving to a hybrid working pattern.

Furthermore, the reporting duty extends to situations where the worker will be working at a different site, branch, or office of your organization, or at a different client's site that has not been previously declared to UKVI.

The guidance defines a hybrid working pattern as one where the worker regularly and planned works remotely from their home or another address, such as a work hub space, in addition to regularly attending one or more of your offices or branches or a client site.

It's important to note that day-to-day changes in work location, such as occasional work at a different branch or site, or working from home, do not need to be reported. Only changes to the worker's regular working patterns should be reported.

Considering this new guidance, we strongly recommend that sponsors ensure all sponsored workers have up-to-date records with the Home Office regarding their regular work locations. If these locations are premises owned or controlled by sponsors, they should be added to the sponsor license as branches. If they are client sites, home addresses, or work hub spaces over which sponsors have no control, adding a sponsor note is sufficient. There is no need to provide detailed lists of home addresses for workers.

To comply with the reporting duties, sponsors should update their records as soon as possible and report any changes to work locations within 10 working days.

We understand that many workers have transitioned to hybrid or home working due to the Covid-19 lockdown in 2020. We do not anticipate compliance action from UKVI for workers currently following a home or hybrid pattern if sponsors have not yet reported the changes. However, we advise sponsors to proactively update their records and report any new agreed changes to the work location within 10 working days of occurrence.

Finally, sponsors should keep in mind that if sponsored workers work fully or predominantly from home, they still need to be based in the UK to justify their sponsorship. It is recommended that sponsors keep a record of their reasons for sponsorship on the personnel file, including requirements to attend premises on a semi-regular basis, visit clients or customers in the UK, and adhere to UK working patterns and practices. Additionally, there may be data protection issues if a worker is based outside the UK.

Please don't hesitate to reach out to us if you have any further questions or need assistance with updating your records.


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