Monday, 16 April 2012
Employers in the UK have been warned to make sure they carry out thorough checks of immigration status during the recruitment process, after it emerged that £12 million worth of fines were imposed on employers last year by the UK Border Agency (UKBA).
Data obtained under the Freedom of Information Act by back office solutions provider, Giant, showed that the UKBA has issued some 6,953 Notifications of Liability (NOLs) since it first introduced its new monitoring system in 2008. These have amounted to £65.3 million in total, with £12 million of the fines imposed in 2011.
Giant’s managing director, Matthew Brown, said that there was a very high burden of compliance on employers and recruiters and they need to make sure that they do not fall foul of it.
“Many of them still rely on manual, paper-based identity checks, which are costly to administer and prone to error,” he explained. “With unemployment high and immigration a burning political issue, employers and recruiters need to make doubly sure that candidates are fully vetted. Putting in place processes and systems to streamline background checking will be prohibitively expensive for the majority of employers and recruiters.”
The UKBA system allows them to impose fines of up to £10,000 per employee on businesses found to be employing people without the right to work in the UK.