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  • Writer's pictureCaroline Wood

Increases to Penalties for Illegal Working

Recently the Home Office announced significant increases to fines for employers in relation to illegal working, which will mean that companies who employ staff who don’t have the right to work in the UK, will be faced with fines that are almost triple of those currently in force.

From 2024, the current fines will increase to a maximum of £45,000 for every illegal worker where this is the first breach by the employer. This fine currently stands at a maximum of £15,000 per illegal worker and so as you can see, represents a significant increase and hopeful deterrent.

Additionally and in cases of companies who repeatedly breach this legislation, the maximum penalty per illegal worker will increase from £20,000 to £60,000.

The decision to implement this change in legislation follows a 50% increase in visits targeting illegal working in just the last year, which is a significant amount. The hope here is that the increase in fines will deter companies from employing illegal workers and ensure that the correct and appropriate right to work checks are completed.

The Home Office has also stated they will consult on additional options to ‘strengthen action against licensed businesses who are employing illegal workers’ later this year.

The increase in these penalties signifies a substantial problem currently and draws further attention on employers, the importance of completing these right to work checks and carrying out follow up checks when required.

Please click on this link for further guidance on how to conduct these checks here.

If you would like any further information on this article, or would like to discuss your employment law and HR matters, please don’t hesitate to contact at and we will be delighted to help you.

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