Today, it has been reported that another 8 directors of restaurants and a supermarket have been disqualified from their position. This is due to them employing illegal migrants to work at their establishments. These recent disqualifications totals a number of 16 directors in the UK being banned from working for not following the UK Immigration Rules in the last 9 months.
UK Directors Disqualified for 47 Years
The eight directors who have now been disqualified employed a total of 22 illegal migrants to work in their restaurants as waiters and cooks. The director of the supermarket was found to be employing butchers who had no right to be in the UK. The restaurants and supermarket are based in Scarborough, Calne, Worcester, Norwich and London. All 8 directors combined will be disqualified for 47 years. Business Minister Jo Swindon stated the unfairness of employing illegal migrants:
“These directors had an unfair advantage over their competitors by employing illegal workers for low wages. Illegal working is not victimless. It is often exploitative, undercuts honest employers, cheats legitimate job seekers out of employment opportunities and defrauds the taxpayer. The public has a right to expect that those who break the law will face the consequences and we have worked closely in this case with our colleagues at the Home Office to achieve this disqualification.”
UK businesses and their directors have a duty to ensure that the individuals they are employing have the right to be in the UK before hiring them.
UK Employer’s Legal Responsibilities
Individuals can be disqualified from being a company director if they do not meet their legal responsibilities. Part of a UK employer’s responsibility is to ensure that non-EEA migrants who they employ have valid leave to remain in the UK. Individuals who are considered to be illegal workers are:
- students with expired visas, or students working more hours than they’re allowed to; or
- people who work on a visitor’s visa.
If you are a director of a company and you want clarification of your legal responsibility we can arrange for you to have a detailed consultation with our expert Immigration Solicitors. UK employers should also be aware they face a fine of up to £20,000 per person for employing illegal workers.
Immigration Legal Advice for UK Employers & Illegal Workers
If you are a UK business and have been affected by the Home Office’s raids, contact us to discuss this further. Business owners sponsoring migrants from outside the EEA must ensure that they are legally registered to sponsor migrants and must have a valid Tier 2 Sponsorship Licence. If the Home Office has contacted you in relation to carrying out a compliance visit at your business premises, contact us for legal advice.
Illegal migrants with strong Human Rights arguments ought to take legal advice and regularise their stay in the UK as soon as possible and before it is too late. Contact us to discuss your immigration situation and we will assess your case and provide you with options of regularising your stay.