All business owners, no matter big or small, can expect the Home Office to visit them at some point to conduct an inspection on hiring immigrants with no right to be here. This is what we refer to as a compliance visit.
Purpose of the visit
As a business owner, you are expected to be familiar with this right to work check. The Home Office will be assessing how far the business owner is complying with his obligations. If you hold a sponsor licence under the Tier 2 and 5 category, you can expect a compliance assessment which is even more complex than a right to work check only.
The visit needs to be taken very seriously. If the Home Office are not satisfied with the organisation’s performance, this could lead to not only the migrant being detained or cast out, you can be sent to jail for 5 years as well plus pay an unlimited fine if you’re found guilty of employing someone didn’t have the right to work in the UK.
The visit can be announced or unannounced. The Home Office may be acting on intelligence they have received, or it may just be that you have been lucky.
The Government will unveil plans to jail illegal workers and launch a new crackdown on companies hiring illegal immigrants.
The Home Office provided this summary of illegal working:
Illegal working is undertaken by individuals who are subject to UK immigration control, and have either entered the UK illegally, overstayed their permission to be here, or have permission to be in the UK but are subject to a condition preventing them from working.
As part of the new measures, off-licences, curry houses, Chinese restaurants and other takeaway firms will face closure if they are found to be employing illegal workers.
The Government will also consider extending these powers to cover minicab firms as per the Home Office.
Preparing for the visit
So how to prepare for the visit and prevent this from happening? Preparing in advance!
Remind yourself of the guidance on preventing illegal working. Be clear what your duties are and how you can meet them. You will need to ensure that your human resources procedures remain robust and have been correctly followed.
In all personnel files, check that correct right to work checks have been carried out. Ensure that copies are available of all sponsored migrants’ files, past and present. Check that all required documents are present in the files and make sure you know your way round the files.
If you need more advice in details or would like to book a mock interview session with us, contact our business immigration lawyer on 0207 2536888 or via email firstname.lastname@example.org.