The National Living Wage will apply to workers aged over 25 years from 1 April 2016
This will be introduced by way of The National Minimum Wage (Amendment) Regulations 2016.
The new minimum wages from 1 April 2016 will be:
• age 25 years and over - £7.20 per hour (the National Living Wage)
• ages of 21 - 25 - £6.70 per hour
• ages of 18 - 21 - £5.30 per hour
• aged under 18 years - £3.87 per hour
• apprentices - £3.30 per hour
The Regulations also increase the financial penalty which can imposed on an employer who underpays. The penalty is calculated as a percentage of the amount by which the worker has been underpaid in each pay reference period. In respect of pay reference periods commencing on or after 1 April 2016 that percentage will be 200%.
In addition, although not a new provision, employers are reminded that it is automatically unfair to dismiss an employee because he or she took action, or proposed to take action, with a view to enforcing the right or securing the benefit to the minimum wage, or because the employee would qualify for minimum wage or a particular rate of it.
Workers (who might or might not be employees as legally defined) have similar rights, namely the right not to be subjected to a detriment for the same reasons.