CIVIL PENALTIES

 BUSINESS IMMIGRATION LAW

CIVIL PENALTIES

Civil penalties can be particularly worrying for a business. Under the current rates, being accused of employing an illegal worker runs the risk of incurring a penalty of up to £20,000 per worker along with other risks.

The best thing that you can do for your business is to have procedures in place which stop you from falling on the wrong side of the law in the first place. SMA Solicitors are available to assist on a consulting basis by visiting your business, carrying out a risk assessment of your current procedures and protocol and advising you on the any improvements that could reduce the risk of a civil penalty being sanctioned against your business. Our expert team will liaise with you to understand the needs of your business and decide the best and most proportionate.

Civil penalties explained

Received a penalty? If you have received a penalty, there is a need to act quickly. The Home Office usually gives you the opportunity to make representations as to why a penalty should be reduced or completely cancelled. It is vital that this part of the process is done correctly as it will be the first steppingstone in what could turn into a full civil trial. The initial stages of the process will be your chance to put forward evidence, reasons and explanations for your actions as to any defence you may have. SMA Solicitors will work closely with you and your business whilst advising you of the legal defences open to you or the manner in which you can cooperate with the Home Office and the civil penalty process in order to mitigate your losses.

Often, the Home Office will cancel a civil penalty or significantly reduce the amount you are charged and there will be no need to go to court. However, there are exceptions to the norm. In the event your civil penalty case does proceed to a full civil trial, your business’s reputation, finances and future could well be on the line and we understand the importance of ensuring that cases are prepared in such a way as to maximise the prospects of success by carefully considering the Immigration Rules, statutory defences and the Secretary of State’s policy and published guidance.

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