Seafish advises UK firms on immigration rules

UK industry authority Seafish has published new guidance to help seafood businesses employing workers from outside the UK better understand immigration requirements.

Companies wishing to employ migrant workers in the seafood industry, either onshore or within 12 nautical miles of the shore, are likely to need to use a Skilled Worker Visa.

Access to labour has been a challenge for the seafood industry in recent years, with many businesses struggling to fill roles since the UK left the European Union.

The visa allows migrant workers to take up certain skilled jobs in the UK including experienced filleters, seafood processing line operatives and deck crews.

Now Seafish, in collaboration with Darren Stevenson of law firm Wiggin LLP, has put together five guides outlining the steps that a business should take to become a sponsor, which is the first step in employing non-UK workers under the Skilled Worker Visa.

The guidance also provides information on the steps needed to meet obligations as a sponsor and employer.

The five guides are:

  • Introduction to the Skilled Worker Visa guide – explaining the fundamentals.
  • How to become a sponsor.
  • How to employ migrant workers under a Skilled Worker Visa.
  • Your ongoing responsibilities as a sponsor of Skilled Workers.
  • Your wider legal responsibilities.

There is also a glossary explaining the key technical and legal terms used in the five guides.

Neil McAleese, Head of Industry Workforce Issues at Seafish, described why the guidance is so important for seafood industry employers.

He said: “We understand that navigating the Skilled Worker Visa is a daunting prospect for many businesses, so we are keen to make sure they have the advice they need in an easy-to-follow format.

“It is vitally important that businesses are aware and understand that recruiting under the Skilled Worker Visa creates obligations for them as an employer.

He added: There are strict penalties if these requirements are not met and therefore, we felt it was important that businesses were provided with guidance to help them understand the commitments that they are making as a sponsor of a skilled worker.”

 

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