A Lewisham company has been named and shamed for failing to pay a worker the minimum wage.

Following investigations by Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs, a total of £2.1 million was found to be owed to over 34,000 workers by 191 UK employers – with one of those in Lewisham.

The breaches took place between 2011 and 2018 and the named employers have since been fined and made to pay back what they owed.

R & A Food & Wine Ltd, based in Lewisham, failed to pay £678.60 to one worker.

The company was dissolved in November 2019.

A government spokesperson noted that not all minimum wage underpayments are intentional and can occur when workers are being paid on or just above the minimum wage rate, and then have deductions from their pay for uniform or accommodation.

Business minister Paul Scully said: “Our minimum wage laws are there to ensure a fair day’s work gets a fair day’s pay – it is unacceptable for any company to come up short.

“All employers, including those on this list, need to pay workers properly.”

The minimum wage law applies to all parts of the UK.

Employers who pay workers less than the minimum wage have to pay back arrears of wages to the worker at current minimum wage rates.

They also face fines of up to 200 per cent of arrears – capped at £20,000 per worker – which are paid to the government.

Chair of the Low Pay Commission Bryan Sanderson added: “These are very difficult times for all workers, particularly those on low pay who are often undertaking critical tasks in a variety of key sectors including care.

"The minimum wage provides a crucial level of support and compliance is essential for the benefit of both the recipients and our society as a whole.”

How much is the minimum wage 2021?

New rates of the National Living Wage (NLW) and National Minimum Wage (NMW) came into force on 1 April 2021. 

These follow recommendations made in the autumn by the Low Pay Commission (LPC).

The new NLW and NMW rates are set out below.

The NLW now applies to all workers aged 23 and over.

The previous age of eligibility was 25. This will come down again to 21 by 2024.

  • Age 16-17 - £4.62
  • Age 18-20 - £6.56 an hour
  • Age 21-24 - £8.36 an hour
  • Age 25+ - £8.91 an hour (National Living Wage)
  • Apprentice rare - £4.30

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