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National Minimum Wage
The national minimum wage rate is a legally-enforced standard that ensures employees are paid what they deserve. It was introduced in the UK in 1999, and today over 90 per cent of the world's countries have some minimum wage laws in place. All sizes of company and almost all types of work are subject to this law, and any business found to be paying under the minimum wage could face severe repercussions. Here, Peninsula advises employers on the different minimum wage age bands, as well as providing information on the 2012 national minimum wage changes .
What is the UK minimum wage?
National minimum wage increases on a regular basis to keep income in line with inflation. As of 1 October 2012, UK minimum wage is as follows:
|Age range||Minimum wage entitlement|
|21 and over||£6.19 per hour|
|18-20 year olds||£4.98 per hour|
|16 and 17 year olds||£3.68 per hour|
|Apprentices||£2.65 per hour|
National minimum wage applies to foreign workers, people who work from home, trainees, and agency workers. However, these figures do not apply for company directors, members of the armed forces, or self-employed people. Meanwhile, there are different sets of rules for apprenticeships and for agricultural workers. It's certainly a complicated area, but one that is vital for employers to get right.
Minimum wage changes October 2012
The minimum wage was changed in 2012 as of the 1st of October, with increases for apprentices and workers aged 21 or over. Apprentices now earn an extra 5 pence an hour, while those over 21 saw an increase of 11 pence an hour. These 2012 minimum wage changes were recommended by the Low Pay Commission, an independent body set up to advise the government in 1998.
As an employer it is vital that you keep up to date with these minimum wage changes. Peninsula can help ensure that your employees are being paid the correct amounts, saving your business from potentially expensive action should a pay issue be raised by one of your workers.
How Peninsula can help with minimum wage legislation
As part of Peninsula's HR outsourcing services, clients can call a 24 hour legal advice line to ask about minimum wage and pay issues whenever they want. This is not an automated, one-size-fits-all service; you'll be speaking to a qualified employment law specialist, who will be able to offer bespoke advice for your specific circumstances.
Alternatively, we hold regular employment law seminars and training sessions where employers or HR managers can find out everything they need to know about national minimum wage, along with other vital aspects of employment law. Furthermore, clients will be informed well in advance of any changes to the minimum wage law, and advised on its correct implementation. The employment law training available from Peninsula ensures that employment issues, be they pay related or otherwise, will never have a negative impact on the smooth running of your business.
Keeping up-to-date with national minimum wage law and changes is essential. It may be your legal duty as an employer, but it also ensures your employees are fairly paid for all their hard work and can afford the rising cost of living. Peninsula's personalised advice on contracts of employment is essential for employers who wish to ensure they are treating their employees in a fair and legal manner.
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