Employment Relations Bill - continued        House of Lords

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SCHEDULE 7
 
  EMPLOYMENT AGENCIES
 
Introduction
     1. The Employment Agencies Act 1973 shall be amended as provided in this Schedule.
 
 
General regulations
     2. - (1) Section 5 (power to make general regulations) shall be amended as follows.
 
      (2) In subsection (1) there shall be substituted for paragraphs (f) and (g) and the proviso following paragraph (g)-
 
 
    "(ea) restricting the services which may be provided by persons carrying on such agencies and businesses;
 
    (eb) regulating the way in which and the terms on which services may be provided by persons carrying on such agencies and businesses;
 
    (ec) restricting or regulating the charging of fees by persons carrying on such agencies and businesses."
      (3) After subsection (1) there shall be inserted-
 
 
    "(1A) The reference in subsection (1)(eb) of this section to services includes a reference to services in respect of-
 
 
    (a) persons seeking employment outside the United Kingdom;
 
    (b) persons normally resident outside the United Kingdom seeking employment in the United Kingdom."
 
Charges"
     3. For section 6(1) (restriction on demand or receipt of fee for finding or seeking to find employment) there shall be substituted-
 
 
    "(1) Except in such cases or classes of case as the Secretary of State may prescribe-
 
 
    (a) a person carrying on an employment agency shall not request or directly or indirectly receive any fee from any person for providing services (whether by the provision of information or otherwise) for the purpose of finding him employment or seeking to find him employment;
 
    (b) a person carrying on an employment business shall not request or directly or indirectly receive any fee from an employee for providing services (whether by the provision of information or otherwise) for the purpose of finding or seeking to find another person, with a view to the employee acting for and under the control of that other person;
 
    (c) a person carrying on an employment business shall not request or directly or indirectly receive any fee from a second person for providing services (whether by the provision of information or otherwise) for the purpose of finding or seeking to find a third person, with a view to the second person becoming employed by the first person and acting for and under the control of the third person."
 
Inspection
     4. - (1) Section 9 (inspection) shall be amended as follows.
 
      (2) In subsection (1) (power to inspect)-
 
 
    (a) for paragraph (a) there shall be substituted-
 
    "(a) enter any relevant business premises;", and
 
    (b) after paragraph (c) there shall be inserted-
 
    " ;and
 
    (d) take copies of records and other documents inspected under paragraph (b).".
      (3) After subsection (1) there shall be inserted-
 
 
    "(1A) If an officer seeks to inspect or acquire, in accordance with subsection (1)(b) or (c), a record or other document or information which is not kept at the premises being inspected, he may require any person on the premises-
 
 
    (a) to inform him where and by whom the record, other document or information is kept, and
 
    (b) to make arrangements, if it is reasonably practicable for the person to do so, for the record, other document or information to be inspected by or furnished to the officer at the premises at a time specified by the officer.
      (1B) In subsection (1) "relevant business premises" means premises-
 
 
    (a) which are used, have been used or are to be used for or in connection with the carrying on of an employment agency or employment business,
 
    (b) which the officer has reasonable cause to believe are used or have been used for or in connection with the carrying on of an employment agency or employment business, or
 
    (c) which the officer has reasonable cause to believe are used for the carrying on of a business by a person who also carries on or has carried on an employment agency or employment business, if the officer also has reasonable cause to believe that records or other documents which relate to the employment agency or employment business are kept there.
      (1C) For the purposes of subsection (1)-
 
 
    (a) "document" includes information recorded in any form, and
 
    (b) information is kept at premises if it is accessible from them."
      (4) For subsection (2) (self-incrimination) there shall be substituted-
 
 
    "(2) Nothing in this section shall require a person to produce, provide access to or make arrangements for the production of anything which he could not be compelled to produce in civil proceedings before the High Court or (in Scotland) the Court of Session.
 
      (2A) Subject to subsection (2B), a statement made by a person in compliance with a requirement under this section may be used in evidence against him in criminal proceedings.
 
      (2B) Except in proceedings for an offence under section 5 of the Perjury Act 1911 (false statements made otherwise than on oath), no evidence relating to the statement may be adduced, and no question relating to it may be asked, by or on behalf of the prosecution unless-
 
 
    (a) evidence relating to it is adduced, or
 
    (b) a question relating to it is asked,
  by or on behalf of the person who made the statement."
 
      (5) In subsection (3) (offence)-
 
 
    (a) for "or (b)" there shall be substituted ", (b) or (d)", and
 
    (b) after the words "paragraph (c) of that subsection" there shall be inserted "or under subsection (1A)".
      (6) In subsection (4)(a) (restriction on disclosure of information) in sub-paragraph (iv) (exception for criminal proceedings pursuant to or arising out of the Act) the words "pursuant to or arising out of this Act" shall be omitted.
 
 
Offences
     5. After section 11 there shall be inserted-
 
 
"Offences: extension of time limit.     11A. - (1) For the purposes of subsection (2) of this section a relevant offence is an offence under section 3B, 5(2), 6(2), 9(4)(b) or 10(2) of this Act for which proceedings are instituted by the Secretary of State.
 
    (2) Notwithstanding section 127(1) of the Magistrates' Courts Act 1980 (information to be laid within 6 months of offence) an information relating to a relevant offence which is triable by a magistrates' court in England and Wales may be so tried if it is laid at any time-
 
 
    (a) within 3 years after the date of the commission of the offence, and
 
    (b) within 6 months after the date on which evidence sufficient in the opinion of the Secretary of State to justify the proceedings came to his knowledge.
      (3) Notwithstanding section 136 of the Criminal Procedure (Scotland) Act 1995 (time limit for prosecuting certain statutory offences) in Scotland proceedings in respect of an offence under section 3B, 5(2), 6(2), 9(4)(b) or 10(2) of this Act may be commenced at any time-
 
 
    (a) within 3 years after the date of the commission of the offence, and
 
    (b) within 6 months after the date on which evidence sufficient in the opinion of the Lord Advocate to justify the proceedings came to his knowledge.
      (4) For the purposes of this section a certificate of the Secretary of State or Lord Advocate (as the case may be) as to the date on which evidence came to his knowledge is conclusive evidence.
 
Offences: cost of investigation.     11B. The court in which a person is convicted of an offence under this Act may order him to pay to the Secretary of State a sum which appears to the court not to exceed the costs of the investigation which resulted in the conviction."
 
 
Interpretation
     6. In section 13(2) (definition of employment agency) for "workers" (in each place) there shall be substituted "persons".
 
 
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