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SMALL business owners across Portsmouth are being urged to check the rules governing the employment of young people when planning to recruit.

James Self, who runs TaxAssist Accountants in the city, said job applications from young people are rising as increasing university fees affect applications to higher education.

He said: ‘Many business owners are unaware of the different tax and legal requirements that apply when employing a young worker.

‘If they earn above £102 per week, they’ll need to be added to the payroll, but they can earn up to £136 per week before employers need to start calculating any deductions.’

He added that anyone who is under 18 who works during term time will have to be added to PAYE, just like any other employee.

And he said that while the minimum wage for young workers is lower, there is also a cap on how many hours they are able to work.

The National Apprenticeship Service also gives employers the opportunity to have training costs subsidised by the government for helping young people.