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Minimum wage review 2019

Published: 22nd March 2019

Author: Sarah Heald, Dorrington Poole

Published in: Rural e.speaking

The government reviews the minimum wage each year.

On 1 April 2019 the adult minimum wage will increase from $16.50/hour to $17.70/hour. The starting out and training minimum wage will increase from $13.20/hour to $14.16/hour. The government has also set indicative rates of $18.90/hour from 1 April 2020 and to $20.00/hour from 1 April 2021. These rates will be subject to each year’s annual review

We recommend you review all wage and salary structures to ensure your employees are paid at least the minimum wage at all times for hours worked.

It is well-known that work required on the farm fluctuates throughout the year. You must ensure that your employees are receiving at least the applicable minimum wage rate for any hours worked at all times. This is the case even when your employees are paid a salary. This may mean your employee’s pay needs to be topped up at certain times of the year to ensure they are paid at least the applicable minimum wage for the hours worked.

Remember non-cash benefits, such as the provision of accommodation on the farm, that form part of an employee’s employment are to be included and taxed appropriately.

Keeping and maintaining accurate time and wage records is vitally important and a legal requirement of employers.

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Welsh McCarthy

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