Employees must be able to check whether they have been paid the correct amount which means that all employees and workers now have the right to see the hours they have worked and been paid for on their pay slips. Employers are required to show the number of hours worked, as well as the earnings, if an individual’s pay varies depending on the number of hours the individual works. This new right applies from the first pay period occurring on or after 6th April 2019. It also means that payslips now have to be provided to workers and not just employees.
The number of hours worked do not have to be shown if a worker or an employee works the same number of hours every month for the same pay. Examples of when the number of worked hours do not have to be stated are:
- A term time worker who is paid the same amount of salary each month e.g. the normal hours are paid via 12 monthly sums across the year;
- Variations in pay because an individual is off sick or taking leave, provided he normally receives the same pay each pay period. [However, if he is paid according to the hours worked and takes time off, then the hours worked must be shown if absent for any reason in the pay period];
- You can see more examples in this document published by the Government.
Exceptions to the Requirement
The new entitlement does not apply to:
– Self employed
– Members of the armed forces or police forces,
– Merchant seamen/women;
– Certain workers in the fishing industry – if paid by a share in the profits or gross earnings of a fishing vessel
There is a partial exception for certain types of overtime. Only the hours of overtime worked need to be shown on the payslip if the individual has a set salary each month but works variable overtime with additional pay at an hourly rate.
Are Your Payslips Clear?
As the purpose is to enable staff to check that they are receiving the correct pay, employers need to consder how the information can be set up and displayed to that end. Before changing the payslip, ask some staff to look at the proposed changes and ask whether those will make it clear to individuals how many hours they have worked and the corresponding payment received.
Start Date for Displaying Hours Worked
The new requirement applies from the pay period which starts on or after 6th April 2019. It applies to both employees and workers unless an individual falls within one of the exceptions noted earlier.
Employers would be wise to check with the employer of any agency staff that they use in order to:
– ensure the agency is aware of the new requirement;
– the agency will be adding the additional information to payslips.
Pay Slips – Current Requirement
In addition to the changes above, readers may wish to note that the current requirements for payslips also cover:
- Provision of a payslip on or before each pay day;
- Earnings before and after any deductions;
- If the amount of deductions is subject to change in each pay period e.g. Income Tax and National Insurance, the amount of those deductions must be shown;
- Giving an explanation of any fixed amount of deductions e.g. the repayment of a loan. This may be done via the payslip or in a separate written statement. Such a statement must be sent out before the first relevant deduction and must be updated every year in which the deduction is still on going;
- The method in which payslips may be provided – on paper or a in physical format or an electronic format that the individual can print.
Enforcing the Right to a Payslip and Stating Hours Worked
If an entitled individual has not received a payslip or has not been provided with the required information, he may submit a claim to an Employment Tribunal. Ideally, the individual should give the employer the opportunity to correct the omission. If that does not occur, the individual should seek help from ACAS to speak to the employer and/or gain a certificate to submit a claim to an Employment Tribunal. If the claim is successful, the Tribunal may make declaration of its decision which may be published on its website i.e. a form of naming and shaming. The Tribunal may also order the employer to repay to the individual any deductions that were not notified to the individual on the payslip or not provided in a statement. Repayments would include any such deductions in the 13 weeks preceding the presentation of the Tribunal claim. That applies even if the employer would have been entitled to make the deductions had this omission not occurred.
 PAYSLIPS Guidance 2019, Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy
 ACAS Guidance – Payslips at http://www.acas.org.uk/index.aspx?articleid=663
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