Nursing employers should start preparing for the Home Office’s latest changes if they want to avoid losing prospective non-EU nurses, according to an immigration law firm.
Applicants for certain professions, including nurses from outside the EU, will need to obtain a new criminal record certificate to present to the Home Office even if they have been subject to a criminal background check before.
The changes will be introduced on 6 April but employers are being advised to start informing prospective staff about the new obligation now.
Law firm Migrate UK, has warned employee sponsors to advise skilled Tier 2 employees, applying to work in the UK under particular Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) codes such as nurses and midwives, that they will be subject to the new requirement to produce a criminal record certificate.
Failure to meet these new requirements for relevant individuals could result in a visa refusal by the Home Office.
‘Don’t be caught out’
‘Even if you know that the employee has gone through a criminal record check before, employees under certain SOC codes will still need a criminal record certificate because previous checks were not examined by the Home Office,’ said Jonathan Beech, managing director of Migrate UK.
‘These latest changes by the Home Office appear to affect those medical professionals who will have direct contact with the public if they’re successful in their application.
‘We advise that employers check relevant SOC codes well in advance of the changes and ensure they communicate any requirement for a criminal record certificate to potential recruits well before April, as processing times for obtaining certificates can vary from country to country.
‘This will give the employee plenty of time to apply and ensure they’re not caught out at the last minute. Also, ensure that they request that their certificates are as up to date as possible,’ Beech said.