Universal Credit is a monthly payment that is replacing six benefits, including Working Tax Credit and Child Tax Credit. It gives essential support for people who need it, including those in low paid jobs. However, the way it is calculated makes it highly sensitive to the exact dates when the worker is paid. As a result, employers choosing certain pay patterns can inadvertently make life very difficult for staff who receive Universal Credit.
Around this same time in 2016, Sports Direct faced an inquiry for violating minimum wage laws. Facing Members of the Parliament, the company’s founder Mike Ashley admitted the retailer’s “unacceptable” practice of deducting 15 minutes worth of pay for being late to work for one minute.
Until recently, there wasn’t any apparent connection between an employer’s automatic enrolment duties and hacking, but this changed earlier this month, when The Pensions Regulator announced that it was to prosecute a recruitment company, Workchain Ltd, and seven related individuals. The regulator has a statutory objective to maximise employer compliance with automatic enrolment and it uses a range of tactics to achieve this. In this case, it employed a new tactic, which involved using legislation that had no direct connection with pensions whatsoever – namely, the Computer Misuse Act, 1990. Read more “Why is Opting Staff out of a Pension like Hacking the CIA Chief?”
We have a terrific skills and resource crisis in the payroll profession just around the corner. Not enough people are coming into the profession, and payroll training does not always equip existing staff with the relevant skills. Whilst they have always been a route into a career or used for career changes, apprenticeships have achieved a higher profile in recent months and years. Read more “The Payroll Apprenticeship”
Back in June, I explained that entering false information on The Pension Regulator’s declaration of compliance is a criminal offence, albeit one which hadn’t as yet seen any prosecutions. However, on 7th March 2018, Crest Healthcare and a related individual pleaded guilty in the first prosecution of its kind.
The Government Gateway is a collection of computers which work together in order to accept electronic submissions on behalf of HMRC and other government departments.
It was launched in 2001, and our system has been sending payroll returns to the gateway since 2005, starting with the old year end forms P14 and P35. The format of the submissions has changed many times over the years and, since 2013, it has been in the form of Real Time Information (RTI). After nearly 17 years of service, it will soon be time for the Government Gateway to retire. According to HMRC’s plan, the gateway will stop accepting RTI submissions on the 14th February, 2018.