The UK is leaving the single market and customs union and will have a new points based immigration system in place from 1 January 2021, which may impact on business costs and workforce. 

Use the GOV.UK tool for businesses to see how you need to prepare.

Existing EU employees must apply to the EUSS before 30 June 2021.

The government has created an employer’s toolkit with advice and information to support EU citizens to apply to stay in the UK.

EU and EEA citizens can use the UK Immigration ID Check app when applying to work or study in the UK.

Get support

Sign up for Brighton Chamber’s free sessions to take your business through the EU transition and beyond.

Prepare now for new rules

What you need to do before 1 January 2021 if you:

Hiring people from outside the UK

Free movement is ending, and the new system will introduce job, salary and language requirements that will change the way you hire from the EU.

From 1 January 2021, you will need to be a licensed sponsor to hire eligible people from outside the UK. Becoming a sponsor normally takes 8 weeks and fees apply.

As a licensed sponsor, you will be able to recruit skilled workers from anywhere in the world, provided they meet certain eligibility requirements. You can find further information, including full details of the sponsorship process on GOV.UK.

See the Home Office campaign to help employers prepare for the introduction of the UK’s new points-based immigration system.

Trading with the EU

From 1 January the way we trade with the EU will change. To buy or sell from the EU you will need to follow new customs rules or you will not be able to continue to trade. Action is required regardless of the outcome of negotiations with the EU and whether or not the government secures a Free Trade Agreement.

Find out what you need to do if your business trades with the EU.

Businesses that import and export goods

From 1 January 2021 you will need to make customs declarations to move goods into and out of the EU.

You should:

Apply for grants if your business completes customs declarations

Find out what grants you can apply for to get funding for recruitment, training and IT improvements if your business completes customs declarations.

Find out if you can get a grant through the SME Brexit Support Fund

The government has made £20 million available through the SME Brexit Support Fund. If you meet certain eligibility criteria, HMRC may give you funding towards the costs of training and/or professional advice. This is to help you with changes to trade rules with the EU.

Applications are now open. Find out more about the fund

Businesses manufacturing goods/importing exporting food and or animal products

View government advice for businesses manufacturing goods/importing exporting food and or animal products.

EU funding

Find more on information on EU funding and links to European and international organisations.

Several business groups have information about the potential impact on businesses, support and training, and proposals for how Brexit should be approached from a business perspective: