1,500 caught in minimum wage spot checks – be aware!

The DTI announced an increase in spot checks to expose breaches of minimum wage regulations in 2007, and ‘high risk’ sectors including small independent employers are certain to be targetted.

The DTI announced an increase in spot checks to expose breaches of minimum wage regulations in 2007, and ‘high risk’ sectors including small independent employers are certain to be targetted.

In 2006 around 1,500 employers employing approaching 30,000 workers between them were found to be in breach of the National Minimum Wage (NMW) Regulations. Inspectors focused on industries where they believed infringements would be likely, e.g. hairdressing salons. It is highly likely that they will adopt a similar ‘sector-based’ approach this year, and this could include the licensed retail industry & independent shops and businesses. The TUC is campaigning to ‘name and shame’ employers found to be in breach and believes that non-compliance is more likley to happen in businesses employing immigrant labour.

Employers identified and who fail to make good shortfalls in minimum wage or other breaches of the regulations within 7 days could face a fine. The NMW is £5.35 per hour (to be reviewed in October 07). Our research indicates that many employers remain in the dark on the detail of the regulations, including the rules regarding young workers and the extent to which the NMW can be offset by other benefits e.g. accommodation, tips and bonuses.

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