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Changes to Sponsors’ document retention obligations

  • Market Insight 5 May 2021 5 May 2021
  • UK & Europe

  • Employment, Pensions & Immigration

Recently published Home Office Guidance has clarified UK employers’ document retention obligations for historic Tier 2 General applications where a Resident Labour Market Test (RLMT) was required.

 Changes to Sponsors’ document retention obligations

Employers are no longer required to retain copies of CVs of unsuccessful candidates or an HR vetting profile showing why each responding Settled Worker was considered unsuitable by reference to advertised criteria.

Document retention obligations now are limited to:

  • Details of any advertisements placed including:
    • a screenshot, printout or photocopy of the advert, or a record of the text of the advert
    • information about where the job was advertised (for example, website address), and for how long
  • A record of the number of people who applied for the job, and the number of people shortlisted for interview or for other stages of the recruitment process. Obviously only the numbers not identities of respondents are required
  • At least one other item of evidence or information showing the process used to identify the most suitable candidate, including:
    • a copy or summary of the interview notes for the successful candidate
    • a list of common interview questions used for all candidates as part of the selection process
    • brief notes on why the successful candidate was selected and why other candidates were rejected
    • information about any scoring or grading process used to identify the successful candidate
    • any other relevant information or evidence.

As part of any future Audit, the Home Office would not be entitled to request additional RLMT evidence. We recommend you take separate advice on the possible GDPR consequences of this change as strictly speaking, UK employers may no longer have a defence for retaining a third party’s personal data relating to past Tier 2 General RLMT processes. Applications under the new Sponsored Workers’ category do not require a prior RLMT, albeit UK employers are still obliged to retain relevant documents evidencing the genuineness of the role and the relevant employee’s suitability.

Please note the minimum periods for document retention are unchanged. That is, for one year following the end of sponsorship OR the date that the relevant employee’s file is audited by the Home Office, whichever is earlier.

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