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Fair Work Commission announces increase to federal minimum wage

By Kristin Ramsey31 May 2016

The Fair Work Commission’s Expert Wage Panel handed down its annual wage decision moments ago.

The Panel ordered that award wages and the federal minimum wage will increase by 2.4% per hour ($0.41 per hour / $15.80 per week) for the 2016/2017 financial year.

This brings the federal minimum wage to $17.70 per hour or $ 672.70 per week.

A robust economic climate and historically low inflation and unemployment rates were significant factors in the Panel’s decision. 

The new rates take effect from 1 July 2016. Businesses need to ensure that they update payroll systems to ensure the new rates are applied from this date.

For businesses operating under enterprise agreements or common law contracts, you will need to make sure that base rates are sufficiently high to satisfy the new minimum rate in the award that underpins your agreement or contract. You may need to seek advice on how this wage increase impacts your business. 

A summary of the decision can be found here.

If you need any assistance in regards to this change please contact Kristin Ramsey, Director and head of the Employment and Workplace Relations team.

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