Creating a profitable and successful business has as much to with saving money as it does a healthy bottom line. The risks from the cost and fallout of litigation, failure to comply with legislation and poor judgement can very quickly spell the end of a business altogether.
There are no statistics which definitively state how many migrant workers might be unregulated but an educated attempt by Migrant Watch UK in 2010 estimated the figure to be above 1 million and growing. With steep penalties for employing workers who do not have the right to work in the UK, carrying out Right to Work training can help your business stay safe and protected from the dangers.
The Home Office requires employers to carry out complete right to work checks on all their employees, even British citizens, and failure to conduct the correct checks leaves businesses liable in the event of the discovery of illegal working.
And don’t forget that illegal workers aren’t just those that have entered the UK illegally under false authority or false identity. It also includes those who have overstayed their visa, worked on a tourist visa or non-immigrant waiver, or those coming to the UK having entered into a forced or fraudulent marriage.
If you carry out the correct checks you will have a statutory excuse against liability for civil proceedings, which includes a £20,000 fine per illegal worker. In addition, employers who knowingly hire or have reasonable cause to believe they are hiring an illegal worker, with or without carrying out checks, have committed a criminal offense and could face a five-year custodial sentence or even an unlimited fine.
The inconvenience of a closure notice or compliance order can have severe consequences on your business and the stress and cost of such an outcome could easily result in the threat of bankruptcy.
Carrying out right to work training will help:
Ensure your company complies with Home Office guidelines, giving protection against civil proceedings in the event of a discovery of illegal working
Show how to verify eligibility at the on-boarding stage
Train staff to identify counterfeit and forged documents
Establish timely checking procedures – checks must be carried out on or before the first day of work, and employers must also check existing staff to ensure that visas and documents remain up to date (According to the BBC, as of last March, 600,000 people should have left the UK but there is no record of their departure).
Taking preventive action and understanding the correct documents required, will protect your business, and your bottom line, against the dangers and potentially catastrophic fallout of illegal working.