Minimum wage

Minimum wage

If your company has employees, please find out more about National Minimum wage.

The National Minimum Wage is worked out at an hourly rate. This means that, however someone gets paid, they still need to work out their equivalent hourly rate to see if they’re getting the minimum wage.

The employers should pay people who do work for them at least the minimum wage if they are a ‘worker’ for minimum wage purposes and a specific exemption does not apply.

Current rates

These rates are for the National Living Wage (for those aged 23 and over) and the National Minimum Wage (for those of at least school leaving age). The rates change on 1 April every year.

23 and over21 to 2218 to 20Under 18Apprentice*
April 2021£8.91£8.36£6.56£4.62£4.30

*Apprentices are entitled to the apprentice rate if they’re either:

  • aged under 19
  • aged 19 or over and in the first year of their apprenticeship

More details are available here. Additionally, please use the National Minimum Wage calculator to check if payments are over the minimum wage.

An agreement cannot waive the requirement to pay minimum wage.

An employer cannot exclude or limit the payment of minimum wage within any type of contract. Likewise, a worker cannot agree to be paid less than the minimum wage or to be unpaid.

It’s against the law to pay below the National Minimum Wage or National Living Wage or to falsify pay records.

If HMRC finds that an employer has not paid at least the minimum wage, they can send a notice of arrears plus issue a penalty for not paying the correct rate of pay.

HMRC can also take employers to civil court for not paying the National Minimum Wage or National Living Wage. The maximum fine for non-payment is £20,000 per worker. Employers who fail to pay can be named publicly and banned from being a company director for up to 15 years.

For more information, please book an appointment by link.

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