The National Minimum Wage
All domestic employers in the UK are required by law to pay at least the National Minimum Wage (NMW). It is a criminal offence for an employer to pay below the NMW, carrying a fine of up to £5,000 on conviction, unless you're living as part of the family household (i.e. without separately metered accommodation). For current NMW rates, please refer to our rates and thresholds page.
- You can check if you are above the NMW from the payslips your employer should be providing you with. Simply divide your gross weekly wage by the number of hours you have worked to calculate your hourly wage
- If you think that your employer is not paying the NMW you are also entitled to inspect the tax records they keep for your employment. They must give you access to these within 14 days of receiving a written request from you, but this should only be your final course of action after more friendly and informal communication between you has broken down
Domestic employees are exempt from the measures concerning working hours but are entitled to a 20 minute rest break for every six hours worked.
When you employ domestic staff in the UK you not only have to find the best possible candidate for your household, you also become an employer. As such you take on a host of responsibilities. For instance, you must draw up an employment contract with your employee within eight weeks of their start date and give them a payslip every time they get paid. It is also a legal responsibility that you have employer’s liability insurance.
In addition you must also make sure that you pay your employee at least the national minimum wage or above, so you need to have a good understanding of the basics of employment law. It's surprisingly easy to make mistakes when you're juggling issues such as holiday entitlement, statutory sick pay, benefits in kind, statutory maternity pay and redundancy pay. At Stafftax we can take care of the payroll aspects for you so you can concentrate on the your family, your household and the more important things in life.
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