Why do companies need to know about immigration compliance?
As the UK government is making more restrictive approaches to immigration compliance, it is important that both employers and migrant employees adhere to the immigration rules.
There are a number of ways that companies who hire migrant workers must be compliant and it starts off by understanding their role as a sponsor. In order for a company to be compliant with immigration laws, they firstly need to register as a sponsor if they are intending on hiring from abroad. Immigration compliance must be satisfied from the moment that a company decides to hire a migrant worker and does not end once a person is hired.
There are a number of duties that a sponsor has such as, record keeping and assigning certificates of sponsorships for genuinely vacant roles. Sponsors must make sure that the people they hire are meeting the minimum skill level and income thresholds. Companies need to be aware of immigration compliance to ensure that they are adhering to laws and regulations, otherwise, they could have their licence suspended or lose it.
As part of the sponsor licence process, an Authorising Officer must be appointed within the company and they will be responsible for overseeing immigration compliance within the organisation.
Compliance checks are undertaken by the Home Office for companies who are applying for a sponsor licence and for those who already hold a sponsor licence. As part of the visit, the Home Office will speak with the Authorising Officer and check files to ensure that the correct documents were obtained pre-employment and that accurate records are being kept for sponsored migrants. The Home Office may check recruitment processes and that the genuine vacancy test has been met. In this test, a sponsor must prove that they can offer genuine employment that meets the required salary and skills level under the visa route. Sponsors should keep documentation evidencing this so that if asked by the Home Office, they can prove this.
Companies must have an understanding of what their role as a sponsor demands of them and this includes keeping up-to-date about current immigration compliance. As a sponsor, a company has a duty to make sure that an individual is not working for them illegally and that they are not breaching immigration rules.
Should you have any queries regarding the above information or if you require assistance with your corporate, employment or immigration matter, please get in touch with a legal professional at Hudson McKenzie via email at email@example.com or by telephone +44(0) 20 3318 5794.
The information provided does not amount to legal advice.