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Retailers must ensure compliance with national minimum wage regulations

Charlotte Rees John, Head of Irwin Mitchell’s Consumer Sector, is urging companies in the retail sector to be proactive in ensuring they adhere to National Minimum… View Article

GENERAL MERCHANDISE NEWS

Retailers must ensure compliance with national minimum wage regulations

Charlotte Rees John, Head of Irwin Mitchell’s Consumer Sector, is urging companies in the retail sector to be proactive in ensuring they adhere to National Minimum Wage regulations.

Her comments come as leading UK retailers, including WH Smith, Marks & Spencer, Argos, and LloydsPharmacy, are among more than 200 companies fined a collective £7m for failing to pay the legal minimum wage.

Rees-John states: “Retailers continue to come up short when it comes to ensuring that they are paying the National Minimum Wage to all employees. The main areas that employers should watch out for centre around deductions and ensuring that every minute of working time is paid.”

To avoid unintentional breaches, Charlotte advises businesses to review their time recording processes and utilise technology to capture all working hours.

She adds: “Many clients have used technology to improve their systems to ensure that all working time is captured. I also talk to them about training, staff meetings and any other work-related events that aren’t purely social events which could also be regarded as working time.”

In particular, she highlights the common issue of uniform policies resulting in deductions from the National Minimum Wage: “One of the most common errors still comes down to the uniform policy; if you stipulate that your employees have to wear a particular uniform and they have to pay for it, then this will be a deduction from NMW in the relevant pay period.”

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