Worker Registration Scheme Changes Announced
It has been announced that the Worker Registration Scheme (WRS) is to close for registration of individuals from some countries with effect from 30 April 2011.
The WRS was introduced in 2004, when eight Accession countries - Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Slovakia and Slovenia - joined the European Union.
Under the scheme as part of transitional arrangements, nationals from these countries have been required to register with the United Kingdom Border Agency on commencement of employment in the UK. When recruiting nationals from these countries, UK employers had an obligation to check that they had registered under the WRS. Fines were payable by the employer if the workers were not registered.
However, the terms of the European Treaty of Accession mean that the UK can only apply transitional restrictions for 7 years, so the WRS is to close with effect from 30 April 2011. Therefore from 1st May 2011, nationals from these countries will be able to access the UK labour market on the same terms as any other EU national.
This is with the exception of nationals of Bulgaria and Rumania (who joined the EU in 2007). Bulgarian and Rumanian nationals wishing to work in the UK are still required to apply for an accession worker card and in some circumstances their employers may still have to apply for a work permit. Please refer to the UK Border Agency website for more information.
Posted on 19 Nov 2016