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Domestic worker minimum wage increase for 2018

Minimum wages are still a touchy subject in South Africa, with many discussions around the possible introduction of a National Minimum Wage across the board.

The Department of Labour recently released the Sectoral Determination for Domestic Workers, indicating the new minimum wages for domestic workers across South Africa – at least until the National Minimum Wage (NMW) is implemented. The current plan for the NMW is to come into effect in May 2018. We will keep you posted on developments in this regard.

When will the increase become effective?

 The minimum wages for domestic workers will increase with effect from 1 January 2018.  The extent of this increase depends on the location of the employer and whether the employee works for more than 27 hours per week. In accordance to the latest determination and depending on the area in which you reside in, domestic workers must be paid a minimum of R1 641 or R2,545 per month. This is an average increase of 5% compared to the 2017 rates.

The minimum wage adjustment is 100% in line with the Basic Conditions of Employment Act and is regulated through the Sectoral Determination. Domestic workers are by law classified as vulnerable, hence the Sectoral Determination governing minimum wage and conditions of employment. It is important to note that domestic workers include housekeepers‚ gardeners‚ nannies and domestic drivers, among others.

What is the minimum wage for my domestic worker? 

The country is divided into two main zones or area: “Area A” refers to large metropolitan municipalities or built-up areas and suburbs, whereas “Area B” refers to all other municipalities. It is important to know that different minimum hourly and monthly rates are applicable to these two areas.  There is also a differentiation between workers who work between 27 and 45 hours a week, and those who work 27 hours or less a week (fundamentally three 9-hour days or less a week).

The tables below reflect the new minimum wages which are effective from 1 January 2018 to 30 November 2018 and exclude any wage increases.

* The classification of the different areas can also be found on the Department of Labour website.

SERR Synergy Labour Relations for Domestic Workers  has been specially designed to deal with all legal requirements and associated risks relating to domestic workers, including drafting Employment contracts, UIF and Workmen’s Compensation registrations and claim.

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