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Case report - National Minimum Wage

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Whittlestone v BJP Home Support Ltd

In the above case,Ms Whittlestone was a care worker. She was paid £6.35 per hour for time spent attending to clients at their homes, but nothing for travel time. She also undertook “sleepovers” at client’s homes from 11pm to 7am for which she was paid £40. She was provided with a bed, and permitted to sleep except when her services were actually required.

The Employment Appeals Tribunal held that Ms Whittlestone was entitled to the national minimum wage throughout the time she was required to be present, irrespective of whether she performed any tasks. She was also entitled to it for her travel time between clients’ homes.

In Practice

Kate FrettenEmployment Partner says, “It has been in the news lately that many care workers are not paid for the time they take to travel between appointments with clients. This case may lead to many claims being made, as it has now been confirmed that the workers should be paid at least the national minimum wage for the time spent travelling. Employers in the care industry, must also now ensure that workers are paid for all the time they are present with clients, even if the worker is entitled to sleep for much of the time.”

At Frettens, all of our solicitors offer a free initial meeting to chat on the phone to answer your questions. If this article raises issues for you or your business, please call us on 01202 499255 and Kate or Paul will be happy to discuss it with you.