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Bosses employing illegal workers face jail or fines

Contractors could face fines of up to £10,000 from the end of February if they fail to make sure their employees have permission to work in the UK.

The National Specialist Contractors Council is urging business to make sure they comply to the new laws being introduced by the Border and Immigration Agency from February 29.

A spokesman said: “Specialist contractors are strongly advised to check they hold copies of the appropriate documents for all their workers to prove their entitlement to work in the UK and to retain them for at least two years after their employment has ended.”

Under the new laws an employer could receive a penalty notice or might face prison even if they did not know they were employing someone who did not have permission to work in the UK.

The only way for an employer to contest a penalty notice is to show they took all reasonable steps to verify documents presented to them. As a result they should also keep documents for at least two years after an employee has left employment.

Websites:

Border and Immigration Agency