To Pay Or Not To Pay – The National Living Wage

22 April 2016

The much talked about National Living Wage (NLW) was finally introduced on 1st April this year for 25 and overs. While the National Minimum Wage (NMW) will still apply to those under 25, the NLW is a higher rate of pay of £7.20 per hour and is designed to encourage a reduced reliance on state benefits. While it may have a different name, it is still a legally required minimum, and not a choice. Any employer who is found to be paying his employees less than either the NLW or NMW will face a penalty of 200% of the underpayment from 1st April.

While we have your attention, the National Minimum Wage rates have been released for October 2016. They are:

Age 21 – 24: from £6.70 to £6.95

Age 18 – 20: from £5.30 to £5.55

Age 16 – 17: from £3.87 to £4.00

Apprentice rate: from £3.30 to £3.40

Meanwhile the National Living Wage will not change in October 2016, as this only commenced from April.

Also worth noting is that from 2017, the date for all minimum wage increases will be in April each year. This is to bring the National Minimum Wage increase in line with the National Living Wage increases.

Please note: This article is a commentary on general principles and should not be interpreted as advice for your specific situation.

Image courtesy of dan at

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