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Help for small firms

Help for small firms: Handling pay and wages

Handling pay and wages - Step 4: Wage slips

It is extremely important that your employees receive regular pay slips that accurately reflect the payments made to them.

All employees must be provided with a wage slip. This is legally referred to as an itemised pay statement and it must be provided on or before each pay date. Pay statements may be provided electronically or as hard copy. However, if an employee is unable to access an electronic pay statement, a hard copy should be produced for them.

Each employee must be issued their own itemised pay statement that includes:

  • the amount of gross pay
  • variable deductions, such as income tax, National Insurance and pension contributions. The reason for the deductions should be set out and each deduction should be properly described
  • fixed deductions, such as union subsidies or an attachment of earnings order issued by a County Court judge for payment of debts
  • the amount of net pay.

If different parts of the net amount are payable in different ways, the amount and method of payment of each part-payment should also be included.

Occasionally, there may be a disagreement involving a pay statement. Employees should be encouraged to try to resolve any matter regarding an itemised pay statement informally. If this does not resolve the situation, they may raise a written complaint (also known as a grievance).

If the matter still remains unresolved, they could make a claim to the employment tribunal to determine what should have been included in the pay statement. A tribunal may award compensation to an employee if it finds that incorrect deductions have been made. To bring a claim, an employee must first use the Acas early conciliation service to try to resolve the matter and avoid going to a tribunal. For more information, go to Early Conciliation.

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