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Employers named, shamed and fined for failing to pay National Minimum Wage

More 130 companies were fined at the end of 2020 for failing to pay more than 95,000 workers over £6.7 million under the National Minimum Wage (NMW) rules.

The latest data covers some of the largest UK companies, whose payroll practices between 2016 and 2018 have been investigated by HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC).

Following its findings, the Government has named and shamed 139 employers who were found to have failed to pay their workers the NMW, which included companies ranging in size from small businesses to large multi-nationals who employ thousands of people across the UK.

This latest release is the first time the Government has named and shamed companies for failing to pay National Minimum Wage since 2018, following reforms to the process to ensure only the worst offenders are targeted.

As well as being named and shamed, employers who pay workers less than the NMW are required to pay back arrears of wages to the worker at current wage rates. HMRC can also issue fines of up to 200 per cent of arrears (capped at £10,000 per worker).

Bryan Sanderson, Chair of the Low Pay Commission, said: “There can be no excuses for non-compliance with the minimum wage rates. The annual changes are well publicised six months in advance following a well-understood process.”

Of those who failed to meet the NMW requirements, many were found to be in breach because low-paid employees had been made to cover work costs, such as paying for uniform, training or parking fees.

Other employers fell afoul of the rules because they failed to raise employees’ pay after a birthday or another change in circumstance that might affect the rate at which they are paid.

To avoid being penalised or named and shamed by HMRC, please seek assistance with your payroll today by contacting us.

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