Businesses Should Prepare For New Immigration Act

Lawyers Say Risks Are High For Businesses Which Ignore New Rules

10.06.2016

David Shirt, Press Officer | 0161 838 3094

Employment lawyers at national law firm, Irwin Mitchell, are urging UK businesses to prepare for the impact of the new Immigration Act 2016.

The Act, which received Royal Assent in May this year, will come into force in stages.  The first change starts on 12 July 2016, whereby the Act extends the existing criminal offence of an employer who allows an individual to apply for a job if there is a reasonable cause to believe they are an illegal migrant. If convicted, the employer could face up to five years in prison, rather than two which was previously the case.
 
Building on measures brought in under the Immigration Act 2014, a new offence of illegal working has been created which enables the earnings of illegal workers to be seized under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002.

On a date yet to be confirmed, a new immigration skills charge on employers who sponsor skilled workers from outside of the European Economic Area will come into force.  The charge will be £1,000 per employee brought into the UK under Tier 2 of the points based system.

Padma Tadi, an employment and business immigration lawyer at Irwin Mitchell, said:

Expert Opinion
“This is a significant piece of legislation which businesses cannot ignore. Employers are reminded to ensure that appropriate pre-employment checks are completed. It is important that businesses who sponsor migrant workers (whereby at a charge of £1,000 per sponsored employee, costs could easily spiral out of control), take proactive steps to familiarise themselves with the changes and seek the necessary legal advice.”
Padma Tadi, Associate

Irwin Mitchell immigration team advise businesses and other organisations, including educational institutions, to ensure they are fully compliant with immigration law and can fulfil their requirements to bring specialist staff to the UK.

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