With last Saturday marking the beginning of the new National Minimum Wage, it has never been so important for employers to ensure they are paying their employees the correct wages.
Last month, HMRC continued its Name and Shame scheme by publishing a further 197 companies who owed a collective £465,000 in arrears. Since the Name and Shame scheme was introduced in October 2013, 687 business have been named who owed an overall £3.5million to employees.
It is an employer’s responsibility to be aware of the minimum wage rates and to ensure that all their employees are paid accordingly. Employers who pay less than the minimum wage, not only have to pay back the arrears, but also face penalties of up to £20,000 per worker, and in extreme cases can be prosecuted.
From 1st October the Minimum Wage Rates are:
£7.20 per hour – 25 yrs and over
£6.95 per hour – 21 to 24 yrs
£5.55 per hour – 18 to 20 yrs
£4.00 per hour – 16 to 17 yrs
£3.40 per hour – apprentices under 19 yrs
£3.40 per hour – apprentices over 19 yrs and in the first year
Please note: This article is a commentary on general principles and should not be interpreted as advice for your specific situation.