Taxman targets music business over unpaid interns


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The Independent Online

The music business is the latest to face a tax probe over use of unpaid interns.

 Ahead of next week’s Brit Awards – the back-slapping industry event when major record labels celebrate their best sellers - HM Revenue and Customs has warned firms about the consequences using unpaid interns.

Michelle Wyer, HMRC’s assistant director, said: “Non-payment of the National Minimum Wage is not an option, and we’re letting the music industry know that we’ve got them in our sights.”

The tax authorities fined more than 800 employers last year and recovered £4m in underpaid wages for some 26,000 workers.

Employment Relations Minister Jenny Willott said: “We need to make sure that interns who want a career in music are getting a fair deal and are not being exploited. There is no excuse for them not to be paid at least the minimum wage if they are employed as a worker.”