Fines to increase for businesses and landlords who knowingly support illegal migrants
Under the latest government plans, revealed on 7th August, the level of civil penalties for employers and landlords are set to triple.
The new penalty scheme is due to come into force at the start of 2024. Employers will see the civil penalty for employing illegal migrants rise from £15,000 for the first offence to £45,000. Repeat offenders will see fines triple from £20,000 to £60,000.
Landlords who house illegal migrants are also facing an increase in fines with penalties rising from £1,000 per occupier to £10,000 and repeat breaches going from £3,000 to £20,000.
Landlords found to be hosting a lodger without lawful immigration status for the first time could be fined £5k, increased from the existing maximum fine of £80.
The tougher fines have been proposed following work by the government’s immigration taskforce, which was launched at the start of this year. Before the increased fines take effect in 2024, the Home Office will launch a consultation on actions that could be strengthened to deter licensed businesses from employing workers without lawful immigration status.
Robert Jenrick, the immigration minister said “We are announcing the biggest shake-up since 2014 on the penalties imposed on rogue employers and landlords who seek to circumvent our immigration rules by hiring or renting to illegal migrants,”
He added: “It’s only right that the size of the fine matches the severity of the offence – and that’s why we are increasing them by such significant amounts… As we ratchet up fines, we are also stepping up enforcement activity so more rogue businesses are getting knocks on their door.”
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