The National Minimum Wage: volunteers and interns

Published Monday, December 21, 2015

National Minimum Wage: volunteers and interns

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This note provides an overview of the application of national minimum wage (NMW) law to persons working in a voluntary capacity.

Only persons defined in law as “workers” are entitled to be paid the NMW. In order to fall within the definition, a person must have a contractual relationship with his employer.

An unpaid volunteer or intern without any contractual obligations will be ineligible for the NMW. However, contracts may under certain circumstances be implied through conduct.  Typically, one will be implied when the volunteer or intern is obliged to perform work.

Commons Briefing papers SN00697

Author: Douglas Pyper

Topics: Employment, Pay, Voluntary organisations

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