Cameron announces fines of up to £20,000 for firms that do not pay minimum wage

Rogue employers, watch out!

Prime Minister David Cameron has announced fines of up to £20,000 for businesses that don’t pay their staff the new national living wage.

Set to be introduced in April next year, the National Living Wage for workers aged over 25 years will be £7.20 an hour. Presently, the minimum wage for that age bracket is £6.50 an hour.  

Cameron said: “The National Living Wage will be introduced in April, giving low-paid workers a £20 a week pay rise.

“By the end of the decade, it will reach at least £9 an hour. Combine that with an increase in the Personal Allowance to £12,500, and you can see the power of the modern Conservative Party’s One Nation message. We back work. We promote well-paid work. We want you to keep more of your own money. That’s why we can say: we are the true party of working people in Britain today.

“But the National Living Wage will only work if it is properly enforced. Businesses are responsible for making that happen, and today I’m announcing how we will make sure they do.”

HMRC is also launching a package of measures to “ensure hardworking people receive the pay they are entitled to”.

 The measures include:

  • Doubling the penalties for non-payment of the National Minimum Wage and the new National Living Wage
  • Increasing the enforcement budget
  • Setting up a new team in HMRC to take forward criminal prosecutions for those who deliberately do not comply; and
  • Ensuring that anyone found guilty will be considered for disqualification from being a company director for up to 15 years.

Business Secretary Sajid Javid said: “There is no excuse for employers flouting minimum wage rules and these announcements will ensure those who do try and cheat staff out of pay will feel the full force of the law.

“This one nation government is committed to making work pay and making sure hardworking people get the salary they are entitled to.”

 

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