The Home Office has updated guidelines on illegal working checks including information on illegal working offences which were recently introduced by the Immigration Act 2016. The new guidelines highlight two new criminal offences:
- where a person subject to immigration control continues to work when disqualified from doing so, which can result in the seizure of wages earned from illegal working, an unlimited fine and to up to six months’ imprisonment; and
- where an employer employs an illegal worker when there is reasonable cause to believe that the person does not have the right to work (in addition to the offence of knowing the person does not have the right to work).
- Access government guidelines here: https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/536953/An_Employer_s_guide_to_right_to_work_checks_-_July_16.pdf
In addition to these guidelines, the government has also issued a code of practice for employers on the avoidance of unlawful discrimination in employment practice while seeking to prevent illegal working. The guidance advises that in order to avoid discrimination when checking the right to work of job applicants and employees, employers should adopt fair and uniform policies which apply to all employees. Read the guidelines here: https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/311831/antidiscriminationcode2008.pdf