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Rights Wage Rates in WA
Wage Rates in Western Australia

The rates on this page are the minimum wage rates applicable to employees covered by the WA State labour relations system and the Federal labour relations system. Many employees are entitled to a higher wage rate because they are covered by an award or enterprise bargaining agreement (EBA). To find out if you are covered by an award or EBA, contact your union or the ACTU Worker's Hotline on 1300 362 223.

As an employee, you are covered by EITHER the State system OR the Federal system.

Approximately 20% of WA workers are covered by the State system. The remaining 80% are covered by the Federal system.

If you do not know which system you are covered by, contact the ACTU Worker's Hotline on 1300 362 223

State System

As at 1 July 2013, the Minimum Weekly Rate of Pay for a full-time adult over 21 years of age, and who is not an apprentice or trainee, is $645.90 per week (Full time employees working 38 hours/week). All State award wage rates will also increase by $18.20 per week.

Junior employees, ie those under 21 years of age, receive a percentage of this rate based on their age See Section 13 of the Minimum Conditions of Employment Act 1993

Part-time employees receive a rate of pay that is calculated by dividing the minimum weekly rate by 38 to get the minimum hourly rate. Casual employees receive a casual loading of 20 percent on the minimum hourly rate.

To find out current award wages and conditions contact Wageline on 1300 655 266

Minimum wages for trainees and apprentices

The minimum rates of pay listed in the Minimum Wages for Trainees and Apprentices Schedule apply to award free apprentices and trainees undertaking a traineeship or an apprenticeship registered with the Western Australian Department Training and Workforce Development.

Many trainees and apprentices are entitled to a higher wage rate because they are covered by an award or enterprise bargaining agreement (EBA). To find out if you are covered by an award or EBA, contact your union or the ACTU Worker's Hotline on 1300 362 223

Exclusions from the minimum wage

Certain types of employees are excluded from the minimum wage provisions of the Minimum Conditions of Employment Act 1993. However, these types of employees may be covered by an award or agreement that provides an entitlement to certain wages and conditions. These exclusions are:

  • disabled persons working in a supported employment service;
  • persons paid wholly by commission or piece rates (per item);
  • volunteers; and
  • persons appointed under the National Trust of Australia (WA) Act 1964 as wardens.

Federal System

 Who is covered by the National system?

  • Employees of constitutional corporations (these are corporations that are trading or financial, usually Pty Ltd or Ltd companies)
  • Employees of the Commonwealth or a Commonwealth authority
  • A waterside employee, maritime employee or flight crew officer employed in connection with interstate or overseas trade or commerce.
Federal Minimum Wage

Minimum wages for employees covered by the federal system are no longer included in awards. They are now protected in Australian Pay and Classification Scales, which form part of the Australian Fair Pay and Conditions Standard.

Fair Work Australia determines the minimum pay and conditions for workers under the national workplace relations system, adjusting the federal minimum wage for workers not covered by awards.

From 1 July 2013, the national minimum wage will be $622.20 per week or $16.37 per hour. The hourly rate has been calculated on the basis of a 38 hour week for a full-time employee.

Information is available on the Fair Work Australia web page.

Modernised Awards

National modern awards apply to employees in the National Industrial Relations System. Many businesses have an agreement that covers their employees. Modern awards do not apply to an employer and employee while they have an agreement in place.

However the base rate of pay under an agreement must not be less than the base rate of pay under the relevant modern award.

The purpose of the modernised awards is that all employees in the same industry across the country will have the same minimum pay and conditions. There are 122 modern awards which replace around1700 state based awards.

Modern awards commenced on 1 January 2010 and transitional arrangements on 1 July 2010.

Transitional arrangements are usually contained within the award and detail the system of annual increments to phase in changes to the new award pay and conditions over 5 years.

See Fairwork Online for more detail on modern awards.


The above summary is provided as a general guide only. UnionsWA is not responsible for the result of any action taken, or not taken, as a result of information contained in this summary. If you think that you are not being paid correctly you should contact your union or the ACTU Worker's Hotline on 1800 362 223 for further information and advice.

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