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27 April 2006

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National Minimum Wage to rise again

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The Government have recently announced that the national minimum wage will increase to £5.05 per hour from the current level of £4.85 per hour from October 2005. Tim Thompson, an Employment Partner at Hegarty & Co Solicitors in Peterborough is urging employers not to turn a blind eye to the wage increase.

Tim commented, “Some companies will complain that increasing the national minimum wage again in October, simply makes it more difficult for some businesses to operate profitably. However, there is no excuse for employers to try and ignore the increase in the national minimum wage.”

The Government estimates that the national minimum wage increase in October will benefit 100,000 workers in the Eastern region.

He continued, “Since April 2004 more than £3 million has been recovered from employers who have not been paying the national minimum wage. The Inland Revenue, who are responsible for enforcing this legislation, investigate all complaints made about employers suspected of not paying the minimum wage but also visit a sample of employers about whom no complaints have been made.”

“The average weekly pay for men in full-time employment in Peterborough is £507.50, which if you divide by 40 hours is an hourly rate of £12.69. When you compare this to the current minimum national wage of £4.85, you can see there is still a large gap between the minimum and the average hourly rate that the Government seem committed to reducing,” said Tim.

The government have also announced that the national minimum wage will again rise in October 2006 to £5.35 per hour. The youth rate (18-21 year olds) will increase to £4.25 in October 2005 and £4.45 in October 2006.

February 2005




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