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Regulations for Employers

Since 1998 the law has been amended so that employers found giving work to people who are illegally in the UK can be prosecuted in the Courts. While a few cases have come before the courts, the problem of illegal employment continues to grow. Under the recently implemented immigration legislation, when an employee is found to be here illegally, not only will the illegal employee be dealt with, up to 5,000 automatic fixed penalty may be applied to the employer for each case. The Government recognises that the problem is much wider than just unlawful employment. Illegal labour usually means cash payments with no tax and national insurance contributions, and very low pay to the illegal worker, all of which means that employers taking on workers who are illegally in the UK are under-cutting the jobs market, and depriving lawful residents of jobs. Being caught with illegal employees could be expensive. Persistent use of illegal labour could even mean prison for the employer.

If as an employer you may be at risk, then you should have the identity documents of your employees checked, and keep a copy of documents on file that confirm that they can lawfully work in the UK. If they cannot produce such documents, then to ensure that you do not face penalties, you should remove any illegal employees from your company.

Employers needing overseas workers must register with the UK Border Agency, and will be assessed as Category A or B sponsors for overseas workers. These grades will be given by Departmental examination of the records of the employer in all aspects of employment, and if an employer is found to be in breach of PAYE, National Insurance or Immigration regulations, or does not pay the agreed salary with work permit employment, it will not be possible for a sponsor to gain a categories A or B approval. Category A gives improved service to employers for recruitment of overseas staff.

If you would like assistance with this, then please contact Cooper Tuff Consultants to arrange for advice and help with your record keeping and staff checking.