HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) enforces payment of the National Minimum Wage (NMW) and is currently investigating social care providers for underpayment of the NMW in respect of “sleep-in” shifts.
The government has recognised the difficulties posed to the sector by the cumulative financial liability for penalties and arrears of wages. As a result:
- The financial penalties faced by employers found to have underpaid workers for “sleep-in” shifts will be waived in respect of arrears of pay resulting from shifts that took place before 26 July 2017.
- The government is suspending enforcement activity in respect of “sleep-in” shifts until 2 October 2017. This will apply to HMRC investigations where there may be an underpayment in respect of such shifts and applies to employers in the social care sector only.