The UK government has ramped up efforts to “stamp out illegal unpaid internships” (writes BBC Business).
HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) has written to more than 500 firms over the last three months reminding them that interns classed as workers must be paid the minimum wage. The government also says it will ask HMRC to focus minimum wage enforcement work on firms using unpaid interns.
The details were contained in the government’s response to a review of working practices. The Taylor Review into working practices, published last year, concentrated particularly on the so-called gig economy of part time and flexible workers.
However, it also highlighted the issue of unpaid internships. It said the government should ensure that “exploitative unpaid internships which damage social mobility in the UK, are stamped out”.