National Minimum Wage and National Living Wage

16 June 2016

Sports Direct is one of the latest businesses to come under fire for not adhering to national minimum wage regulations.

Britain’s largest union, Unite, has been leading a campaign against ‘shameful’ work practices at Sports Direct. Unite revealed to a select committee that some workers received their wages through pre-paid debit cards; costing £10 to get, workers are charged £10 a month in ‘administrative fees’ for the card, as well as 75 pence for cash withdrawals.

As well as Sports Direct tycoon Mike Ashley admitting workers were paid below the minimum wage, the committee also heard how workers, if they were one minute late at the retailer’s Shirebrook warehouse, were docked 15 minutes' pay.

It also emerged that The Best Connection was charging workers a fee of over £2.45 for ‘insurance services’ straight from their weekly wages with no explanation.

Penalties for failure to comply

With the introduction of the National Living Wage in April the penalty for non-payment is 200% of the amount owed, unless the arrears are paid within 14 days. The maximum fine for non-payment is £20,000 per worker. However, employers who fail to pay will be banned from being a company director for up to 15 years.

Acas has useful information and guidance on both The National Living Wage and National Minimum Wage.

CIPP comment

The CIPP Policy & Research team has produced a survey to aid in the gathering of data and experiences from employers and payroll professionals that will help to measure the impact of the National Living Wage and the National Minimum Wage. The survey will close on Monday 1 July 2016.