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Right to Work penalties imposed

In the UK employers have a statutory obligation to carry out Right to Work checks. Making sure that your staff have a right to work in the UK is a core duty as an employer. Sometimes these obligations are overlooked within businesses, whether this is because there is still a lack of understanding of what checks need to be done or simply employers do not have the time to do them.

It can be easy to overlook such important checks, especially when the rules can change over time, meaning that you must continuously keep up to speed with what is required by law.

Failure to carry out these checks can result in large fines for businesses by the Home Office and can be very damaging, leading to severe penalties that can close a business.

The latest Home Office figures show that between 1st October and 31st December 2017, 51 different penalties were awarded to employers in the North East, Yorkshire and Humber area alone. Leading to an overall fine in the region of £870,000 for not complying with illegal working legislation.*

*Figures from Home Office

These figures may seem low versus the number of businesses in the area but this does not include the number of investigations and checks that are taking place.

As a result, this should underline the importance for employers to carry out checks and make sure all paperwork is up to date.

These penalties can be issued to any type of business, whether large or small and in any sector so no business is exempt. Typically, people would assume hospitality and manufacturing companies would be the most affected, this is not the case at all. If you own a business, you must do the checks, no one is exempt.

Should you ever be in the unfortunate position of being investigated, and you have no evidence of completing the Right to Work documents for all your staff and you do not have the legal documentation on file, then there is a very small chance of overturning any penalties.

For peace of mind compliance when conducting right to work checks, or receive advice and support if you have been investigated, get in touch with the team at HR Alchemy today on 03338 802810.

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