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Reporting Obligations – Hybrid Working Pattern

Home Office guidance relating to sponsored workers and associated reporting obligations went through a series of changes during the Covid-19 pandemic in order to remain both administratively workable and relevant to fast-changing work practices. 2022 saw the staged end to the Covid-19 adjusted Home Office guidance applicable to sponsored workers, however the temporary adjustment period highlighted a disconnect between company working practices and Home Office Guidance.


One such disconnect has surrounded atypical and flexible working arrangements, where the information that the Home Office receives through a Certificate of Sponsorship and/or Sponsor Licence application does not best reflect the nature of modern working practices.


The Home Office has now clarified its Guidance as it relates to Flexible Working or Hybrid Working Pattern policies. There is an obligation to report a change in work location for a sponsored worker. The Home Office now specify that this includes where a worker:


‘is, or will be, working remotely from home on a permanent or full-time basis (with little or no requirement to physically attend a workplace)’


or where ‘the worker has moved, or will be moving, to a hybrid working pattern’.


How best to report a flexible working arrangement will depend on the nature of the policy employed at your organisation and to whom it applies, however we would suggest considering the following:


  • Blanket Corporate Policy – if you have a single corporate policy that applies to all employees or, at least, all sponsored employees, then the Home Office should be notified of this change in policy across the organisation.


  • Case-by-case arrangement – if flexible working arrangements at your organisation are arranged with employees on a case-by-case basis, then any reporting should reflect this and be undertaken for individual employees.


  • Fully Remote Working Arrangement – this can be an issue for some sponsored workers and where this is the case, we encourage employer sponsors to discuss the scenario with your Magrath Sheldrick LLP contact to review if sponsorship can remain in place.


Ad-hoc or occasional changes to work location that is not regular and planned will not ordinarily need to be reported to maintain compliance with Home Office sponsor management obligations.


Please get in touch with your Magrath Sheldrick LLP contact to discuss flexible working arrangements at your organisation and to ensure that you are complying with Home Office reporting obligations.

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