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HMRC internal manual

National Minimum Wage Manual

Working time: output work; determining hours worked

Relevant legislation

The legislation that applies to this page is as follows:

* National Minimum Wage Regulations 2015, regulations 36 to 43



For national minimum wage purposes, the time worked in a pay reference period by a worker performing output work is calculated by adding together;

  • calculated hours attributable to output covered by a “fair” piece rate (NMWM08360), and
  • time spent working on output where no “fair” piece rate applies (NMWM08370), and
  • time treated as worked; for example, time spent waiting (NMWM08380), travelling (NMWM08400), training (NMWM08390) and performing tests for “fair” piece rate sampling (NMWM08410).

Where a “fair” piece rate applies the employer will have evidence of an average hourly output rate and will communicate the details to a worker in a suitable notice (NMWM07070).

A valid “fair” piece rate will be demonstrably based on paying at least the national minimum wage (NMWM03160).