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back to article UK.biz faces severe penalties for hiring illegal workers

British businesses have been warned by the Home Office that they will need to prove the legal status of their migrant workers. At the same time, they will have to ensure they don't weed out illegal workers by using methods that could be construed as racist. Under the proposed rules outlined last week, a maximum fine of £10,000 …

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Typical GB Gov

You must check that Non Uk Residents are able to work, but you can't check if they are not UK residents...

I thought Lord Sutch died !

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Taxes?

What happens when the Government hires loads of illegal workers as, say, cleaners? If they get fined then they get the money straight back again.

Perhaps it would be better if, say, the person responsible for recruiting was fined rather than the organisation.

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check please

"employers could be prosecuted under race discrimination laws if they only carry out checks on workers who they believe are not British citizens."

Why would they carry out checks on people they don't think need checking?

If the check is carried out at the point of entry into the country and again at the point of application for work/study, why do we need more checks?

Who checks the people who do the checking?

I'd get my coat but I don't know what country it was made in.

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A whole £10,000

woweee - I bet <insert any employer larger than your local kebab shop> are sh*tting themselves at that one.

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NI Number

To work (or more correctly pay your taxes) in the UK you must have a National Insurance number. This is issued to UK citizens shortly before their 16th birthday. I assume for that non-UK nationals resident in the UK must apply for one.

Surely the government could check that the new employee has a valid NI number, and it was issued to the same name/address as the new employee?

Oh wait, its HMRC that handles income tax now, and the are by the government's own estimation several million false NI numbers in the system...

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God, give us ID cards

As an EU citizen and UK resident I can only say: "bring on those bl**dy ID cards for everyone and let's stop this madness. So many countries use them and as far as I can see Big Brother lives in the UK more than anywhere else.

You don't have ID cards but now the Russian mafia can make up one for you and your children!

It's just crazy that I can vote for the local council pretending to be my neighbour and nobody can check who I really am.

And by the way, it's years I am hearing how much it would cost to implement ID cards and much money would go to EDS or IBM. But in these years I haven't heard a single person wonder what they have done in those hundreds of countries where ID cards already exist. You need to realise that if something has not been invented in the UK you can still use it, can't you? BTW, maybe you can start with the meter!

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Quick, make a fricking database!

Quick, we need a database of all the legal citizens then we can check if you're illegal or not!

Ignore the fact that the common Joe can't use common sense to weed out illegals, we must need a database ... now, when David Cameron applies for a job after leaving the Tory party out of shame, his job at the Daily Mail won't go very well when the computer says he isn't in the database and deports him!

Meanwhile, illegals get jobs and illegal criminals aren't deported incase the Italian police would beat him with pasta and sauce! Human rights!

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to Bob: common sense?

Now tell me how you can apply common sense to understand what country someone is from? Oh yes, I forget that everyone in the UK speaks so many foreign languages that common Joe won't need a minute to spot if someone speaks Urdu, Farsi or French.

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RE: NI Number

The checks on getting an NI card are quite stringent, or at least hard to jump through. It won't help though - what we have at the moment is that it takes 6 months to get an appointment to get an NI number, so while you are waiting for one and paying tax you end up with a "temporary" NI number.

In fact I know several Australians who have come over, worked for 2 or 3 years, paid tax and even reclaimed some all without bothering to get get a real one.

Anytime you introduce red tape the two most likely outcomes are:

a) no-one can do anything till it is completed, harming people, businesses and the ecomomy (see teachers having to get police certified - wasn't completed in time and left a lot of them unable to work)

or

b) lots of "temporary" loopholes in the system which let people get on with life with minimal (but still some) fuss, but make a mockery of the intent of the law.

Which one will this end up? Any guesses?

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Anonymous Coward

Lateral Thinking

Every country has an element of unregistered work (Black Economy). In the case of illegal immigrants (of which there are many all across Europe), the harder it is for them to make enough money for a crust of bread by working for it, the more they will have to turn to some other even less honest means of survival.

I know without doubt that if I were unable to get food for my family by honest means, I would have no hesitation in turning to crime to get it.

Placing heavy fines and threats of prison on employers is not the way to either help the economy, help the illegal immigrant or sort out the problem - it would be a lot more useful to have them employed and paid than starving and pushed to crime.

It is easy to sit in a fine office, in a "safe" job with a bloated pay packet, fine house, new car etc. and make up all these rules; it is slightly different when you have nothing and are fighting to stay alive.

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to Andy S

Well there are clues, bad English for one, foreign accent would give away that one is an immigrant. To determine their legal status should be easy from there .... Ask some simple questions likewhere are you from? A legal immigrant from Poland with would have no problem answering this truthfully, how did you come here? etc.

Illegal immigrants will want to hide their past, a legal immigrant wouldn't ... asking an immigrant worker where they came from doesn't seem too inquisitive to me ...

You could probably also notice when young workers don't speak txt tlk or shizit ... suggesting they are not British youth.

How hard they work will likely give them away as Eastern Europeans, by the simple fact, they're working twice as hard as us ...

Seems fairly easy to spot one to me.

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Another force for ID cards

"Under that proposal, employers could be prosecuted under race discrimination laws if they only carry out checks on workers who they believe are not British citizens."

So you have to check *everyone* their way, which of course will force everyone who wants a job to get an ID card even if they not 'compulsory'

Just another way to force things through without thier spinmiester's having to use the 'compulsory' word.

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Anonymous Coward

Bob you have it all there!

You have just written down another one of those procedures that have led to the missing HMRC disks. You have employed 150 words to describe a procedure that is overly complicated, subject to interpretation and just can't stand on its feet.

I can sense you are British even without hearing your accent. Your love for things that must be multiplied by 12 and divided by 16 gives it away more than a foreign accent.

Other countries use a procedure that can be described with THREE words "check ID card".

But obviously the choice is yours (you don't want those bureaucrats in Brussels to interfere.... right?)

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@Andy S

"Other countries use a procedure that can be described with THREE words "check ID card"."

And this ID card will be completely impossible to fake? I think not.

Meanwhile, I have to get a new British passport because my old one has expired and my new employer won't accept it as proof despite it clearly saying "BRITISH".

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Anonymous Coward

NI Numbers

@ David,

Just a minor niggle, but it takes less than two weeks to get a NI appointment outside London, and anyone with a valid work permit, or EU nationals, can work for up to six months before they get their permanent number.

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Pah

The Home Office has no track record of being in any sort of control of this - so from their viewpoint it's a neat solution to just 'outsource' the problem along with the liabilities to employers.

I eagerly await the first attempted recursive prosecution of the Home Office for their improperly vetted cleaners etc.

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re: re: NI Number

Actually if your born in britain you get an NI number from when child benefit is claimed.

My 3 Year old has their NI number issued already.

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Joke

@Andy S

Why are you being so aggressive? Almost insulting.

Incidentally you spelt 'metre' wrongly :)

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Britian already has a points based system

Its called the HSMP (Highly Skilled Migrants Programme) and its a right c*nt because the HMRC change the requirements every 3 months or so. Considering it takes 3-6 months for an application to be processed this leads to all sorts of fun! Stupid bloody HMRC...

(disgruntled Aussie given the boot from the UK after 2 years!)

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to Will: sorry

Sorry for being aggressive.... but I find it very frustrating that there is so much talk about something when reading this:

"Meanwhile, I have to get a new British passport because my old one has expired and my new employer won't accept it"

you realise that basically everyone is acting as if ID cards already exist with the additional confusion of actually not having them!

What if this guy tells his employer that he doesn't have a passport? In theory one should not be forced to have a passport, right? If practical circumstances force people to have a passport, then it likes having ID cards, isn't it?

BTW, I enjoy living in the UK, I just wish you were more open to look at what other countries do and in case it is good for the UK, then use it without reinventing the wheel.

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severe penalties for hiring illegal workers will fail bet it with me

SEVERE PENALTIES EVEN DEATH PENALTY WILL NOT DISCOURAGE OR DETER EMPLOYER FROM HIRING ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS BECAUSE THE SO-CALLED ILLEGAL IMMIGRANT PAYS TAX TO EMPLOYER WHICH IN TURN GOVERNEMENT DOES NOT GET, ILLEGAL IMMIGRANT DO NOT CARE ABOUT MINIMUM WAGE,ILLEGAL IMMIGRANT DO NOT GO ON LEAVE, ILLEGAL IMMIGRANT DO EVERYTHING INCLUDING EXCESS OVERTIME TO REATAIN HIS JOB.

WAY FORWARD, GOVERNMENT SHOULD HAVE A WAY OF DOCUMENTING ILLEGALS LIKE IN SPAIN AS LIBERAL DEMOCRAT RIGHTLY SAID EVERY 3YEARS WHO HAVE PAID A STIPULATED AMOUNT OF TAX THROUGH THEIR PAID EMPLOYMENT BY SO DOING NO EMPLOYER WILL HARBOUR ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS AND EMPLOYERS WILL STOP USING THEM TO THEIR OWN ADVANTAGE

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