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Employing staff (registration cards)

Employing new staff

When you start up a business, you’ll need a business licence. Find information about this on our starting up a business page

Once a business licence is in place, you can employ staff.

Registration cards

Before taking on an employee, you must check that they have a registration card.

The registration card will show the person's residential and employment status. It will be one of the following:

  • 'entitled'
  • 'entitled for work'
  • 'licensed'
  • 'registered'

When the employee shows you their registration card, you should:

  • check the card is in date
  • ask for photo ID 
  • take a photocopy of the card and photo ID
  • return the card to the employee

Who you can employ

You can employ as many 'entitled' or 'entitled for work' people as you want.

However, you need permission from us at the Population Office to employ anyone whose status is 'licensed' or 'registered'.

Permission to employ staff 

To apply for permission to employ any ‘registered’ or ‘licensed’ staff, complete an application for registered and / or licensed staff and return it to us (by email, post, or dropping it in).

Staffing limits

Your staffing limits can be found on your business licence. If you’re not sure what your staffing limits are, contact us or read our business licensing guidance notes.

You must not go over your staffing permissions. Exceeding your limit is against the law.

You don’t need to tell us when you’ve taken on a new employee who is covered by your business licence. This will be picked up through your manpower return

Cards for ‘licensed’ employees

When taking on a ‘licensed’ employee, you need to fill out a licensed employee template letter. The template needs to be printed on company headed paper.

Your employee will need this to be able to get a registration card from us at Customer and Local Services.

Temporary staff from an agency

If you employ temporary staff through a recruitment agency, you don’t need to see their registration card. They will be covered by the agency’s business licence.

Using Back to Work Recruitment to help you find staff

Back to Work Recruitment can help to fill any vacancies that you have within your business. They are similar to a regular recruitment agency (matching locally qualified job seekers to a role), but offer all services free of charge. A range of incentives are available to employers using this service.

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