Blog entry reveals wage probe

An accountant interviewed under caution by HM Revenue & Customs in her
role as chief executive of a council has revealed the details of the probe on an
ICAEW blog.

Elizabeth Raikes of Torbay County Council was interviewed after the council
failed to provide HMRC with details of staff on the minimum wage, which leaves
her facing possible prosecution.

Raikes revealed the cloud hanging over the council on the blog set up by
ICAEW chief executive Michael Izza.

She claims the person in charge of passing the information across had left
the council, and the notices were not picked up by mistake. The information was
provided as soon as the error was spotted.

Raikes warned that under the Minimum Wages Act directors were liable for such
issues and simple processing errors could lead to others finding themselves in
the same situation. ‘I was interviewed at the local office by two [HMRC staff]
who travelled from Manchester, which seemed like overkill to me.’

HMRC said it would not discuss individual cases.

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