From 6 April 2009 employers will face a penalty if HMRC discover there have been any shortfalls in payment of the national minimum wage. HMRC compliance officers now also have new inspection powers with new criminal offences for national minimum wage offences.
For periods starting on or after 6 April 2009, the amount of the penalty is set at 50 per cent of the total underpayment. There is a minimum penalty of £100 and a maximum penalty of £5,000.
In addition to penalties workers will be entitled to have arrears of wages repaid at current rates.