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HMRC internal manual

National Minimum Wage Manual

From
HM Revenue & Customs
Updated
, see all updates

Records, evidence, powers & offences: records; length of time to retain records

Relevant legislation

The legislation that applies to this page is as follows:

For pay reference periods commencing

* on or after 6 April 2015; National Minimum Wage Regulations 2015, regulation 59(2) & 59(8)
* before 6 April 2015; National Minimum Wage Regulations 1999, regulation 38 (2) & (7)

General

Employers are legally required to keep sufficient records to show that they are meeting their national minimum wage obligations and paying their workers at least national minimum wage (NMWM12020).

The records:

  • are required to be kept in a form which enables the information kept about a worker in respect of a pay reference period to be produced in a single document (NMWM12030) and
  • must be retained by the employer for a minimum of 3 years beginning with the day upon which the pay reference period following the pay reference period to which the records relate ends. The following examples illustrate this requirement:

Example 1; illustration of time limits

Pay reference periods (PRP) PRP A PRP B PRP C PRP D
         
Period to retain records 3 years from end of PRP B 3 years from end of PRP C 3 years from end of PRP D  

Example 2; worked example

  A B C D
         
Pay reference periods (month ending) April 2013 May 2013 June 2013 July 2013
Period to retain records 3 years from end of 31 May 2013 (i.e. 30 May 2016) 3 years from end of 30 June 2013 (i.e. 29 June 2016) 3 years from end of 31 July 2013 (i.e. 30 July 2016) 3 years from end of 31 August 2013 (i.e. 30 August 2016)