UK Visas & Immigration (“UKVI”) has published its quarterly report showing the number of civil penalties for illegal workers found in each region of the UK between1 January and 31 March 2016 (“the specified period”).

During the specified period, the London & South East region was found to have the highest number and greatest value of penalties and the highest number of illegal workers. Please see the table below for the relevant figures.

  London & South East

% of all regions in the UK

Number of penalties 440 52
Number of illegal workers found 662 55
Value of penalties issued (£)
(gross value of penalties issued)
7,780,000 55











To access UKVI’s quarterly report, please click here.

Figures published by UKVI show that the value of penalties issued during the specified period in the London & South East region ranged from £5,000 up to £225,000 (the latter penalty being imposed on a Restaurant in West Drayton).

Recent legislative changes introduced by the Immigration Act 2016, as explained here, now make it a criminal offence for an employer to continue to employ an individual if they have reasonable cause to believe that person does not have the right to work in the UK whereas the legislation . This change in the law coupled with the high number and value of penalties issued means that it is of upmost importance that employers are carrying out right to work checks on all ‘workers’.

The Immigration team at Bates Wells Braithwaite regularly carry out immigration audits for clients to ascertain if they have the correct systems in place in order to avoid civil penalties being issued, provide in house training to HR personnel on conducting right to work checks and act for clients whose Sponsor Licences have been suspended or revoked.

If you would like to discuss any of the issues raised in this article, please contact Chetal Patel, a Senior Associate in the Immigration department.

Chetal  Patel photo

Chetal Patel


+44(0)20 7551 7741

View full information about Chetal Patel

Posted on 09/09/2016 in Legal Updates

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