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Insufficient checks on workers can lead to hefty fines

Charlotte Gallagher, Managing Director of P3 People Management, Manchester’s leading HR consultancy works with property and construction businesses, advising them on HR issues.

She also makes them aware of legislation changes and law relating to illegal workers.

Over the last year, £12 million in fines have been issued to employers for failing to carry out adequate checks to verify candidates’ right to work in the UK.

According to data obtained under the Freedom of Information Act, the UK Border Agency has issued 6,953 Notification of Liability notices with a total value of £65.3 million since the new system was introduced in February 2008.

This new system gave the UK Border Agency the power to issue civil penalties of up to £10,000 to employers for every illegal worker. The level of fines varies according to whether suitable eligibility checks – such as verifying right to work by checking passports – have been carried out.
Despite the tougher regime, not all employers consistently carry out ‘right to work’ checks during the recruitment process.

Charlotte said to us: “Employers need to make doubly sure that candidates are fully vetted. The damage – not just financial, but reputational – of employing an illegal candidate can be considerable.”

Not only can consultants at P3 People Management ensure you get the right person for the job, but they can offer guidance on the correct checks that bosses should make before a contract of employment is offered.

Charlotte added: “A company’s success if highly dependent upon the people working within it – your staff have the opportunity to make a positive or negative impact on your business – so it’s important you recruit the right people. Getting the selection process wrong carries considerable losses in terms of recruitment costs, lost sales, missed deadlines and lower staff morale. Businesses need to match the dynamics of your company, the career opportunity and the candidate, giving you the opportunity to do more than just fill a position”.

For help with legislation and compliance, please contact the team at P3 People Management on 0161 941 2426 or visit