Over 20 UK restaurants and pubs including branches of KFC and Pizza Hut have been found to be underpaying workers in a list published this morning by HMRC.
HMRC found that nearly 240 employers were found to be underpaying staff on the minimum wage, with many companies that employ caterers such as professional sports teams and stadia also on the list.
A Camden branch of KFC was found to have underpaid £680.81 to three workers, with average arrears of £226.94 per worker. A Croydon branch of Pizza Hut was found to have underpaid a worker £460.69.
A KFC spokesperson said: “Unfortunately, there was an error with one our franchisee’s accounting systems. This meant that the pay of two team members was not automatically updated as it should have been when they turned 25.
“On realising this mistake, we immediately reimbursed and apologised to them and have ensured the problem has now been fixed.”
Deductions from wage costs for uniform was found to be the top reason for underpayment, while failure to pay travel time, underpaying apprentices, misusing the accommodation offset and using the wrong time periods for calculating pay made up the rest of the top five reasons.
HMRC Low Pay Commission chairman, Bryan Sanderson, said: “It is crucial that employers understand their responsibilities and workers know their rights around the minimum wage. That is why active enforcement and effective communication from Government is so important.
“It is therefore encouraging to see that HMRC has recovered unpaid wages for the largest number of workers yet in this round of naming and shaming. I’m confident that the Government will continue to pursue underpayment of the minimum wage vigorously.”
Catering Today has approached Pizza Hut for comment but is yet to receive a formal response.