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Letter requesting a reference from a previous employer.

Request For Employer Reference


The Request for Employer Reference is to be used when writing to a referee nominated by a job applicant.

The letter asks the referee to confirm the applicant’s dates of employment and suitability for the new role. It also asks the referee about the applicant’s disciplinary record.

Requesting a reference involves processing personal data under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). Employers must ensure that they have a legal basis for processing data and, in this context, the most likely basis is that the employee has consented to process the data. This is because the employee is likely to have a genuine choice about whether or not to consent to data processing for employment reference purposes. If the employer makes use of the Simply-Docs Exit Interview Form when the employee leaves the role, that form expressly asks for the employee’s consent to take up references.

Reference requests and references should be marked ‘confidential’ and ‘addressee only’.

It is safest not to ask questions about health at all but, if necessary, employers should ensure that they do not ask questions relating to health or disability until a job offer has been made.

This Request for Employer Reference letter template is in open format. Either enter the requisite details in the highlighted fields or adjust the wording to suit your purposes.

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