Football club's ticket sales breached minimum wage rules
Deductions made by Middlesbrough Football Club from its employees' wages to pay for season tickets breached minimum wage regulations.
That was the decision of the Employment Appeal Tribunal, which said the arrangement was for the club's own use and benefit, within the National Minimum Wage Regulations 2015.
The tribunal heard that employees' rates of pay were in accordance with the minimum wage. However, the club deducted regular instalments to pay for season tickets for family members.
The employees were not obliged to buy season tickets but if the deductions were treated as reductions for minimum wage purposes, their wages would fall below the minimum level.
HMRC argued that the payments should be classed as reductions, and the tribunal agreed.
It held that the arrangement breached regulations relating to payment for goods or services from the employer.
The deductions had been for the club's use and benefit; the arrangement was the mechanism by which it was paid for season tickets. The regulations did not require a deduction to be for the ‘sole’ benefit of the employer.
Please contact David Rushmere if you would like more information about the issues raised in this article or any aspect of employment law.