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UK Visas and Immigration and Immigration Enforcement have published a quarterly report showing a total of 943 illegal workers were found between 1 January and 31 March 2015.
The report also shows that £9 million in employers' fines were issued and a total of 448 penalties were given.
Wales and the South West of England had the lowest number of illegal workers and penalties, whilst London and the South East of England had the highest.
This high figure for fines for a short period of time confirms the government's trend of taking a hard lined approach to prevent the exploitation of illegal workers and prevent illegal working; see the previous article regarding the government's proposed measures.
The government has also published the details of every employer who has either:
not paid or is not making regular payments 28 days after it has exhausted all of its objections and appeal rights; or
has been served with at least a second penalty once it has exhausted all of its objections or appeal rights, regardless of whether it has made any payments.
The easily accessible report showing each employer who has not been paying its illegal working fines could have a negative impact on an employer's reputation. Also with fines being as high as £105,000, they could lead to businesses closing down altogether.
To prepare you and help protect your business from these fines, our immigration team is able to provide tailored legal advice, including an audit of your workforce to identify any risks and to ensure you check, copy and keep the right documents.