Rogue employers named and shamed for failing to pay minimum wage

  • 139 companies, including major household names, have short-changed their employees and have been fined
  • offending firms failed to pay £6.7 million to their workers, in a completely unacceptable breach of employment law
  • Business Minister Paul Scully says the list should be a ‘wake-up call’ to rogue bosses, as department relaunches naming scheme after 2-year pause

Almost 140 companies, including some of the UK’s biggest household names, are being named and shamed today for failing to pay their workers the minimum wage.

Investigated between 2016 and 2018, the 139 named companies failed to pay £6.7 million to over 95,000 workers in total, in a flagrant breach of employment law. The offending companies range in size from small businesses to large multinationals who employ thousands of people across the UK.

Preserving and enforcing workers’ rights is a priority for this government. While the vast majority of businesses follow the law and uphold workers’ rights, the publication of the list is intended to serve as a warning to rogue employers that the government will take action against those who fail to pay their employees properly.

This is the first time the government has named and shamed companies for failing to pay National Minimum Wage since 2018, following reforms to the process to ensure only the worst offenders are targeted.

Business Minister Paul Scully said:

Paying the minimum wage is not optional, it is the law. It is never acceptable for any employer to short-change their workers, but it is especially disappointing to see huge household names who absolutely should know better on this list.

This should serve as a wake-up call to named employers and a reminder to everyone of the importance of paying workers what they are legally entitled to.

Make no mistake, those who fail to follow minimum wage rules will be caught out and made to pay up.

One of the main causes of minimum wage breaches was low-paid employees being made to cover work costs, which would eat into their pay packet, such as paying for uniform, training or parking fees.

Also, some employers failed to raise employees’ pay after they had a birthday which should have moved them into a different National Minimum Wage bracket.

Employers who pay workers less than the minimum wage have to pay back arrears of wages to the worker at current minimum wage rates. They also face hefty financial penalties of up to 200% of arrears – capped at £10,000 per worker – which are paid to the government. Each of the companies named today have paid back their workers, and were forced to pay financial penalties.

While not all breaches of minimum wage rules are intentional, it is the responsibility of all employers to ensure they are following the law. With this round, we are also publishing a short educational bulletin that summarises public guidance on paying workers and common reasons for underpayment – helping to ensure that workers are not short-changed in future.

National Minimum Wage Naming Scheme, Round 16: educational bulletin (PDF, 242KB, 6 pages)

The companies the government is naming today were served a notice of underpayment between September 2016 and July 2018, following investigations by HMRC.

Last month, the government announced a measured increase in National Living Wage and National Minimum Wage rates, which will come into effect from April 2021. Every worker is entitled to the National Minimum Wage, no matter their age or profession.

This is the full list of companies named for failing to pay the National Minimum Wage:

  • Tesco stores Limited, Welwyn Hatfield AL7, failed to pay £5,096,946.13 to 78,199 workers
  • Pizza Hut (U.K.) Limited, City of Edinburgh WD6, failed to pay £845,936.41 to 10,980 workers
  • The Lowry Hotel Limited, trading as The Lowry Hotel, Salford EC4A, failed to pay £63,431.51 to 99 workers
  • Doherty & Gray Limited, Mid and East Antrim BT42, failed to pay £43,470.16 to 128 workers
  • Independent Care & Support Ltd, Medway ME2, failed to pay £40,275.17 to 55 workers
  • Amber Valley Council for Voluntary Services, trading as Amber Valley Centre for Voluntary Services, Amber Valley DE5, failed to pay £37,346.46 to 104 workers
  • Premier Care Limited, Salford M27, failed to pay £31.198.61 to 407 workers
  • Hill Biscuits Limited, Tameside OL7, failed to pay £25,867.06 to 247 workers
  • Sendon Garage Services Limited, Lambeth SW8, failed to pay £24,869.52 to 2 workers
  • Natural Nails Beauty London Ltd, Haringey N15, failed to pay £15,265.58 to 4 workers
  • Superdrug Stores PLC, Croydon CR0, failed to pay £15,228.57 to 2222 workers
  • St Johnstone Football Club Limited (The), Peth and Kinross PH1, failed to pay £14,266.74 to 28 workers
  • Home Grown Hotels Limited, New Forest SO43, failed to pay £13,790.44 to 25 workers
  • Rebus Construction Ltd, Hart RH12, failed to pay £13,379.94 to 5 workers
  • Mrs Emma Hartley, trading as Whitehall Hairdressing, Leeds, failed to pay £12,882.14 to 2 workers
  • The Walshford Inn Limited, trading as The Bridge Hotel & Spa, Harrogate W1W, failed to pay £11,947.23 to 26 workers
  • Southern Health and Social Care Trust, Armagh City, Banbrige and Craigavon, failed to pay £11,285.34 to 269 workers
  • Müller UK & Ireland Group LLP, Shropshire TF9, failed to pay £10,702.11 to 54 workers
  • Dakota Forth Bridge Limited- Dissolved 20/03/2020, City of Edinburgh S70, failed to pay £10,236.50 to 4 workers
  • Pinnacle PSG Limited, City of London NW1, failed to pay £10,166.03 to 10 workers
  • Preystone Property Investments Limited, trading as Battlesteads Hotel and Restaurant, Northumberland NE48, failed to pay £9767.15 to 26 workers
  • Western Brand Poultry Products (NI) Ltd, Fermanagh and Omagh BT92, failed to pay £9,275 to 50 workers
  • Nahid Residential Limited, trading as Manor House Hotel, Guildford GU1, failed to pay £9,159.53 to 5 workers
  • Norfolk Coastal Pubs Limited, trading as The Golden Fleece, North Norfolk NR23 failed to pay £8,141.69 to 14 workers
  • Worldwide Foods (Birmingham) Limited, trading as Al-Halal Supermarket, Birmingham B10, failed to pay £8,062.88 to 1 worker
  • Eat Food Limited, trading as Albatta Restaurant, Colchester CO1, failed to pay £7,987.15 to 5 workers
  • G & J Properties Limited, Bolton BL7, failed to pay £7,858.16 to 1 worker
  • Adi’s Hand Car Wash Ltd – Dissolved 19/02/2019, Barking and Dagenham RM8, failed to pay £7,750.84 to 2 workers
  • South Eastern Health and Social Care Trust, Lisburn and Castlereagh BT16, failed to pay £7,564.66 to 193 workers
  • Discount Wallpapers Limited, trading as O’Neills Decorating Centre, Bolton WA12, failed to pay £7,446.14 to 11 workers
  • Sturgess & Thompson Limited, Leicester LE1, failed to pay £7,385.40 to 2 workers
  • Belfast Health and Social Care Trust, Belfast BT9, failed to pay £7,303.41 to 192 workers
  • Helio Leisure Limited, trading as Helio Fitness, Fylde FY3, failed to pay £7,298.69 to 26 workers
  • Northern Health and Social Care Trust, Antrim and Newtownabbey, failed to pay £6,900.72 to 146 workers
  • Hoar Cross Hall Limited, East Staffordshire OX7, failed to pay £6,651.94 to 26 workers
  • Renard Resources Limited, Westminster WC2E, failed to pay £6,492.95 to 484 workers
  • Imago

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