National Minimum Wage rates
The adult rate of the National Minimum Wage (NMW) increases to £6.08 (£5.93) an hour from 1 October 2011. This is payable to those age 21 and over.
The rate for those aged 18 to 20 increases to £4.98 (£4.92) and for 16 and 17 year olds to £3.68 (£3.64) an hour.
The apprentice rate, for apprentices under 19 or 19 or over and in the first year of their apprenticeship, increases to £2.60 (£2.50) and hour.
Updated guidance available on the Business Link website includes specific situations such as those engaged on work experience or internships and their entitlement to the NMW. The guidance also includes a new worker checklist for employers and case study examples.
The press release confirms:
'Entitlement to the NMW does not depend on a job title but on whether the arrangement they have with an organisation makes them a worker for NMW purposes. Where an individual is a worker - and no exemption applies - then they must be paid at least the NMW.'
Employment Relations Minister Edward Davey said:
'Internships and work experience of all forms offer an excellent opportunity in helping to bridge the gap between education and the workplace. And for businesses it allows them access to a wide talent pool of some of our best and brightest who didn't take the traditional route into a job.
Fairness though is absolutely paramount with all placements. When a worker is entitled to the minimum wage, they should be paid it and we will continue to enforce the law. Today's publication will help clarify this for employers and will also make sure that all interns and those on work experience placements have a better understanding of their entitlement to the minimum wage.'
HMRC are able to charge penalties to those employers found to be in breach of the NMW rules.
If you have any queries on the NMW please do get in touch.
Internet links: NMW rates Business link guidance Press release NMW Penalties