Employers ‘named and shamed’ for paying below minimum wage

National minimum wage
£6.31: the 2013-14 standard rate for the national minimum wage

The Government has published a list of employers that have failed to pay the minimum wage to staff.

Under the new regime introduced in October 2013 – which makes it easier to name and shame employers who fail to comply with National Minimum Wage regulations – the Department for Business Innovation and Skills (BIS) has published a list of 25 employers that between them owe workers more than £43,000 in arrears, and face financial penalties of more than £21,000.

Business minister Jenny Willott said: “Paying less than the minimum wage is not only wrong, it’s illegal. If employers break the law they need to know that they will face tough consequences.”

The Government plans to increase the penalties for employers to up to £20,000 for each individual worker they have underpaid, rather than the maximum penalty applying to each employer. If an employer underpays 10 workers, this will mean they could face penalties of up to £200,000.

HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) investigated the following 25 employers after workers made complaints to the Pay and Work Rights helpline:

  • Christine Cadden and Nicola Banks of Renaissance, Wirral, failed to pay £7,311 to three workers.
  • Alan King and John King of Arthur Simpson & Co, Bradford, failed to pay £6,426 to a worker.
  • Central Heating Services, Hampshire, failed to pay £6,200 to four workers.
  • Cargilfield School, Edinburgh, failed to pay £3,740 to a worker.
  • A2ZEE Constriction, Cramlington, failed to pay £3,376 to 14 workers.
  • Mr and Mrs Balasco of Eugenio, Bristol, failed to pay £3,038 to two workers.
  • Mr and Mrs Hampton of The Wheatsheaf Inn, Crewe, failed to pay £2,058 to five workers.
  • Steven Stainton of Steven Stainton Joinery, Cumbria, failed to pay £1,416 to a worker.
  • Runbaro, Swindon, failed to pay £1,414 to a worker.
  • Satwinder Singh Khatter and Tejinder Singh Khatter of The Bath Hotel, Reading, failed to pay £1,238 to two workers.
  • Richard Last of Classic Carpentry, Godalming, failed to pay £1,237 to a worker.
  • We are Mop, London, failed to pay £1,018 to two workers.
  • Sue English of Legends Hairdressers, Colchester, failed to pay £823 to a worker.
  • Saftdwin, Hampshire, failed to pay £806 to two workers.
  • Master Distribution, Essex, failed to pay £719 to a worker.
  • Perth Hotels, Perth, failed to pay £557 to a worker.
  • Bryants Nurseries, Hertfordshire, failed to pay £494 to a worker.
  • Dove Mill Retail Outlet, Bolton, failed to pay £462 to a worker.
  • Luigi’s Little Italy, Yorkshire, failed to pay £281 to five workers.
  • CPS SW, Exmouth, failed to pay £261 to a worker.
  • Gary Calder, Richard Calder and Neil Calder of Avenue Agricultural, Northamptonshire, failed to pay £257 to a worker.
  • Dakal, Northampton, failed to pay £252 to two workers.
  • Zoom, Havant, failed to pay £242 to three workers.
  • HSS Hire Service Group, Manchester, failed to pay £149 to 15 workers.
  • Sun Shack, Hamilton, failed to pay £134 to eight workers.

Lynn Collins, TUC regional secretary said: “The penalties won by HMRC – which the Government has rightly decided should be even bigger – should be a clear deterrent to any bad boss thinking about short changing their staff. We also need to see more of these immoral companies named and shamed.

“HMRC staff deserve credit for winning back millions of pounds for cheated employees but they need greater resources to catch the many minimum wage crooks still out there.”

From 1 October 2014, the standard rate for the national minimum wage increases by 3% to £6.50 per hour. Other minimum wage rates are detailed here. Employers have 28 days to appeal against a notice of underpayment.

BIS has asked anyone who suspects they are not being paid the wage they are legally entitled to call the Pay and Work Rights helpline on 0800 917 2368.

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