The National Minimum Wage (NMW) is the minimum pay per hour most workers under the age of 25 are entitled to by law.
The government’s National Living Wage (NLW) is the minimum pay per hour most workers aged 25 and over are entitled to by law. The rate will depend on a worker’s age and if they are an apprentice.
Changes to the rates
The apprenticeship rate only applies to apprentices aged:
• Under 19
• 19 or over who are in the first year of their apprenticeship.
Apprentices aged 19 or over in their second year of apprenticeship must receive the national minimum wage or national living wage rate their age entitles them to.
A new rate will apply to the next pay reference period that begins on or after the date:
• A rate increase begins
• An employee reaches a new age bracket
For example: An employee paid on the 20th of each month will start to receive the new rate of minimum wage from 21 April onwards.
Non-payment of the NMW or NLW
It is against the law for employers to pay workers less than the NMW or NLW, or to falsify payment records. The maximum fine for non-payment will be £20,000 per worker. However, employers who fail to pay could also be banned from being a company director for up to 15 years.