Byron has recently been in the news following arrests by the Home Office of 35 of its workers from Albania, Nepal, Brazil and Egypt. The arrests were made at the burger chain on 4 July with Byron’s ‘full co-operation’ according to the Home Office. Interestingly, the arrests have caused quite a stir on social media, with campaigns for the chain to be boycotted following reports that training sessions were allegedly set up to lure workers to a single location for their arrest.
Byron has been hailed by the Home Office for its full compliance with ‘immigration and asylum law in its employment practices’. It was not disputed that the chain had conducted the correct ‘right to work’ checks on recruits, rather that the employees had provided false documents. The Home Office has since confirmed that as a result of their full compliance, the chain would not face any legal action.
Companies need to be vigilant in conducting their ‘right to work’ checks. A checklist for employers can be downloaded here.
The recent passage of the Immigration Act 2016, which has strengthened the offence of illegal working, demonstrates the Government’s tough attitude towards illegal working. Now more than ever employers need to exercise a great deal of caution in conducting their ‘right to work’ checks to avoid falling foul of the law. The important message to take from Bryon is that where those checks fail, employers should fully comply with the Home Office to avoid legal action. However, full compliance may still not escape the consequences of negative publicity and social media attention.
Our expert immigration lawyers can support you with conducting right to work checks and complying with UK immigration law. For further assistance please contact our team firstname.lastname@example.org.