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Crackdown on Illegal Employment

The Government has announced plans to get tougher on employers who take on immigrant labour illegally. Since many arboricultural employers recruit international candidates; typically from New Zealand or Australia this could potentially affect them; especially those that work on construction/development sites. Remember if you use CTC recruitment’s temporary employment service we will undertake all the necessary checks for you and assume liability for the candidate’s employment status. Here are 10 ways employers can ensure that they are compliant and up to date:

1. Are your right to work records up to date? Retaining the correct evidence of employees’ right to work provides a statutory defence against illegal employment. Audit employee files regularly to ensure documentation remains up to date – for example, copies of new passport photo pages.
Ensure you maintain up-to-date records of your workers’ visa compliance, visa expiry dates (to take early steps to extend visas) and contact details (if you need to contact them in line with your notification duties).

2. Is your recruitment process compliant? The Home Office requires employers to take compliant copies of right to work documentation prior to employees starting work. By checking documentation during your recruitment process, normally at interview stage, you minimise the number of documents you may need to check. The requirement to evidence the right to work applies to all employees regardless of nationality.

3. Are you following correct procedures for advertising roles? When preparing adverts for new roles it is recommended that you comply with the Home Office’s resident labour market test. This stipulates, for example, that adverts are placed with Job Centre Plus and contain prescribed information. If you choose to recruit an overseas migrant, ensuring these steps have been taken should ensure you can move ahead quickly.

4. What if you find a problem? If you discover a discrepancy with an employee’s paperwork, this will not necessarily mean they cannot work legally in the UK. Before taking action you may, with their prior consent, need to check their right to work with the Employer Checking Service. We also recommend you take advice on your options. If you were to terminate employment without a fair reason you may face a costly unfair dismissal claim.

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