The National Minimum Wage 2014

The National Minimum Wage (NMW) increases on the 1st October 2014. Below are the current rates and the new rates that comes into force next week.

What

Prior to October 2014

per hour

From 1 October 2014

per hour

Workers aged 21 +

£6.31

£6.50

Development rate for workers aged 18-20

£5.03

£5.13

Young workers aged16-17

£3.72

£3.79

Apprentices under 19 or who are over 19 but in the first year of their apprenticeship

£2.68

£2.73

If you are a London employer – have you considered paying the London Living Wage? It is £8.80 at the present, and if your business is based anywhere in the rest of the country, the Living Wage is set at £7.65.

For help with HR, whether you are take on your first or your fiftieth employee, do contact us for a no obligation discussion. Embrace HR, based in Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, helps SMEs who do not have their own HR departments, or those who need HR support from time to time.

Time Off for Fathers and Partners for Antenatal Appointments

With effect from 1 October 2014, prospective fathers and partners now have the right to take unpaid leave to attend antenatal appointments. This unpaid time off from work can be taken by employees and qualifying agency workers if they meet one of the following criteria. The individual should be:

  • the baby’s father;
  • the expectant mother’s spouse, her civil partner, or partner (of either sex in an enduring relationship;
  • intended parents of a child in a surrogacy arrangement if they expect to be entitled to and intend to apply for a parental order in respect of that child.

There is no qualifying period for employees. This is a right from the first day that they are employed. However, to qualify, agency workers need to be doing the same kind of job for the same ‘hirer’ for at least 12 weeks. The maximum time per appointment is capped at 6 hours and 30 minutes but an employer may offer more time off.

If an employee or qualified agency worker is refused time off to accompany the expectant mother, they may make a complaint to the Employment Tribunal within 3 months. If the Tribunal upholds the complaint, compensation may be awarded. This would be calculated as twice the hourly rate of pay for each of the hours that the person would have taken off if the right had been respected.

Further information can be found in an employer guide by the Department of Business Innovation & Skills via this link: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/antenatal-appointments-time-off-to-accompany-a-pregnant-woman