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Spotting the difference between interns and workers

Alongside the announcement by HMRC that it will be sending out letters to 200

Alongside the announcement by HMRC that it will be sending out letters to 200 employers who have recently advertised intern opportunities, to make sure employers are paying all their workers the correct national minimum wage rate, Acas have highlighted that it’s vital to understand the differences between interns and workers to ensure that both parties have a positive experience and companies avoid unintended obligations as well as adverse publicity. In mainstream private and public sector organisations, if an intern is only observing or shadowing employees and does not undertake any work personally, then Acas advise that it could be that the individual is a not a worker and will not be entitled to the national minimum wage. However an intern may be entitled to the national minimum wage if they fall within the definition of 'worker', i.e. an individual who has a contract of employment or any other contract to perform any work personally for the organisation. If in doubt, check it out.

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