23 October 2023

HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) has reported that more than 450 workers in Cardiff were underpaid the National Minimum Wage (NMW) by £243,000, last year. Businesses failing to comply with minimum wage rules could face penalties of up to 200% of their arrears – plus having to pay the arrears owed to workers and employers may also be publicly named.

HMRC is writing to more than 5,000 employers in the Cardiff area to highlight common mistakes around the NMW and National Living Wage (NLW) - offering support to help them get it right and reminding them of their legal obligation. HMRC is offering around 1,400 employers in Cardiff a free support call with one of the NMW / NLW experts. During these calls employers can discuss their minimum wage concerns and ask questions. HMRC can help identify any mistakes and, if needed, help put things right. If a business corrects the mistakes as a result of the support call, HMRC will not charge any penalties.

Marc Gill, Director of Individuals and Small Business Compliance at HMRC, said:

“We want Cardiff workers to get the pay they’re due under minimum wage rules and it’s their employers’ responsibility to ensure this happens.

“HMRC is here to support businesses to get it right. Our information and checklist will help employers pay what their workers are due and assist them in identifying any possible mistakes, so they can make sure their staff are not losing out.”

HMRC reported that the five most common causes of NMW underpayment are:

  1. extra time added on to the start or end of your shift that you are not paid for:
    • this could be attending handover meetings, completing security checks, or performing cleaning duties at the start or end of your shift, and you are not paid for the extra time you spent working
  2. travel time you are not paid for:
    • if you have to travel in connection with your job and you are not paid for this time. This includes travelling from one work assignment to another or travelling to training. It does not include travel between work and home
  3. time spent training that you are not paid for:
    • if you have to spend time training in connection with your job and you are not paid for this time
    • this includes training that takes place at work, at home, or outside of your normal working hours
  4. paying for items connected with your job, which are deducted from your salary and could take you below the minimum wage:
    • this includes things like paying for tools, equipment, uniforms, or items of clothing needed to meet a dress code
  5. mistakes when paying apprentices:
    • not paying for all the time worked
    • failing to pay the minimum wage following the annual increase.

Employers can access support at any time to ensure they are paying the NMW correctly:

The full press release can be found, here.

Information provided in this news article may be subject to change. Please make note of the date of publication to ensure that you are viewing up to date information.