Coronavirus (COVID-19): government restrictions in Essex

England is under national coronavirus restrictions. Find out what you can and can't do.

Go to the coronavirus hub to find out what this means for services in Essex, for advice and support.

Brexit Transition information for businesses and employers

The UK Government has a dedicated website offering advice and guidance for businesses and organisations on changes at the end of the Brexit Transition period.

Businesses moving goods between Great Britain and Northern Ireland should register with the Trader Support Service.

Employees and recruitment

There are no changes on employment checks for immigration status EU, EEA or Swiss nationals until 30 June 2021.

Job applicants may choose to use the Home Office online service if they’ve been granted status under the EU settlement Scheme, but you cannot require them to do so.

You do not have to check whether your existing employees have status under the EU Settlement Scheme.

You can use an Employer Toolkit to explain the EU settlement scheme to employees. The toolkit contains a range of ready to use leaflets and posters. Translated materials are also available.

The Withdrawal Agreement provides for on-going recognition of qualification decisions made before the end of the Transition Period. There are changes from 1 January 2021.

Goods crossing borders

There are significant changes to the processes for goods to cross borders. These are detailed in the Border Operating Model. To assist hauliers, government has published an online Haulier Handbook. This details the changes that hauliers need to be aware of as well as giving locations for drop in advice sites.

An online checking service is available to advise if HGVs have correct documents for loads to cross an UK-EU border. This service must be used to generate a permit to use Port of Dover or Eurotunnel. In addition, Hauliers must also follow ferry and port operator’s booking and shipping processes. Those for the Stena services from Harwich to Netherlands can be found online.

An Inland Border Facility opened at North Weald on 1 January 2021. This is for specific CTC, ATA and TIR customs process. An online service will let you pre-notify HMRC if you are attending the site.

Further advice

Visit the BEST Growth Hub or Essex Chambers of Commerce for links to a number of further materials for businesses. These include details of explanatory webinars and the Customs Grant Scheme.

The UK Government operates two online forums where you can access key information and ask questions:

ECC Trading Standards’ Business advice service can provide tailored business advice and provides links to free advice.

There are also a number of government helplines that may be useful:

  • HMRC Customs & International Trade helpline - 0300 322 9434
  • HMRC Imports and Exports general enquiries - 0300 200 3700
  • DVSA Vehicle Operator Licensing enquiries - 0300 123 9000
  • DVSA International Road Haulage Permits - 0330 678 1117
  • The Office for Product Safety and Standards - 0121 345 1201
  • Rural Payments Agency (RPA) Trader team - 0330 041 6500
  • Animal, Plant and Health Agency (APHA) - 0300 1000 313
  • Defra Rural Services - 0300 020 0301
  • Fish Exports helpline - 0330 159 1989
  • The Intellectual Property Office - 0300 300 2000
  • BEIS business support lines, England - 0800 998 1098
  • Home Office, UK Visas & Immigration helpline - 0300 790 6268
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