These rates are valid for the period 01/10/2011 – 01/10/2012. Future rates will be available on the HM Revenue & Customs website: http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/paye/payroll/day-to-day/nmw.htm#1
A ‘worker’ is defined as someone who works under a contract of employment (written or implied) whereby there is an obligation on the individual to perform the work and an obligation on the employer to provide the work.
The exceptions to this legislation are if the work experience placement is part of a further or higher education course and does not exceed one year, or if an individual is undertaking a placement that consists entirely of shadowing.
If the individual is engaged as a ‘volunteer’ the National Minimum Wage does not apply. However, a ‘volunteer’ does not have any form of contract, is not under any obligation to perform work and is free to come and go as they please.
There is also a specific exemption in National Minimum Wage legislation for ‘voluntary workers’ who work for a charity, a voluntary organisation, an associated fund raising body or a statutory body. However, specific conditions must be met. These are that the person must not receive any monetary payments, except reimbursement of expenses, nor any benefits (except the provision of reasonable subsistence and accommodation). This exemption is designed to allow people who genuinely wish to work without profit for good causes to continue to do so without fear of qualifying for the National Minimum Wage.
Further advice can be sought from the Pay and Work Rights helpline on 0800 917 2368.