Editor's message: The national minimum wage has been a key policy area for successive governments since its introduction in 1999, with the Conservative administration asking the Low Pay Commission to recommend rates so that they “are set as high as possible without damaging the employment prospects of each group".
The national minimum wage is enforced through a combination of financial penalties for non-payment and a policy of "naming and shaming" - the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy publicises cases where employers have deliberately breached the national minimum wage laws.
Even if the rates that you pay appear to be significantly higher than the national minimum wage, you should still check that you are not inadvertently breaching the law. Be aware, for example, that a salary-sacrifice arrangement might bring an employee's pay below the relevant national minimum wage rate.
The level of the minimum wage is reviewed each year, with uprating taking place on 1 April. The Government has announced new rates to take effect from 1 April 2020.
Clio Springer, senior employment law editor
The new year begins with a new government, the prospect of Brexit and a number of employment law developments already on the horizon. What does HR need to do to meet its obligations and prepare for the year ahead?
Sanctions for failing to pay staff the national minimum wage are not tough enough and there needs to be a greater risk of detection to incentivise organisations to remain complaint, a report has argued.
Updated to include information on the forthcoming Podcast: Key employment cases for 2020.
Updated to include the new rates of the national minimum wage that will come into effect from April 2020.
Updated to include the new rates of the national minimum wage in force from 1 April 2020.
Updated to include new rates of the national minimum wage, effective from 1 April 2020.
Updated to include details of the national minimum wage rates, effective from 1 April 2020.
From the start of April low-paid workers will benefit from a rise in the minimum wage that is four times the rate of inflation, in what the Prime Minister has called the "the biggest ever cash boost" to the legal pay floor.
Updated to reflect that the Court of Appeal will not hear the appeal in Awan v ICTS UK Ltd because the parties reached a settlement.
HR and legal information and guidance relating to the national minimum wage.