The minimum wage is a legal right which covers almost all workers above compulsory school leaving age.
There are different minimum wage rates for different groups of workers as follows:
- The main rate for workers aged 22 and over is currently set at £5.52 an hour. On 1 October 2008 this will increase to £5.73
- The development rate for 18-21 year olds is currently set at £4.60 an hour this will increase to £4.77 on 1 October 2008
- The development rate for 16-17 years olds. This rate is £3.40 an hour. This will increase on 1 October 2008 to £3.53 an hour
- On 1 October 2008 the rate of the accommodation offset will increase to £31.22 per week (£4.46 per day). The current rate is £30.10 per week (£4.15 per day)
It is important to note that these new rates only apply to pay reference periods beginning on or after the date they came into law