The Department of Business Innovation and Skills (BIS) this week announced that Zoe Evans, the Director of a recruitment agency in Loughborough trading as Kensington Mayfair, has been required by magistrates to pay £2,030.00 in fines and costs after prosecution for withholding pay from seven workers.
Her actions were in breach of Regulation 12 of the Conduct of Employment Agencies and Employment Businesses Regulations 2003. which provide that an employment business cannot withhold payment from a work seeker on the grounds that the client has not paid it; that there is not a valid timesheet; that the work seeker has not worked any other period other than that to which the payment relates; nor for any other reason that is within the employment business’ control.
Ms Evans was also banned from being a Director or Company Secretary of any limited company for a period of 1 year. Isis Management Consultancy Limited supplied catering and hospitality staff, many of whom were students at Loughborough University who were using the agency for part-time work.
The BIS press release states that “EAS inspectors issued numerous warnings to the Directors regarding their failure to pay the workers but they ignored the requirements of the law and prosecution was pursued”. The press release goes on to note that the Employment Agencies Standards Inspectorate are working in conjunction with HM Revenue and Customs’ National Minimum Wage Enforcement Team and have carried out investigations in Swansea.
This confirms the stated BIS policy (since January 2011) of naming those who flout the law. Stories of this kind are a reminder to all in the recruitment industry of the EAS’s powers and demonstrate that the government is prepared to bring prosecutions where the law is flagrantly breached and warnings ignored.
Author: Ben Grover