Do I Have to Apply to get The Minimum Wage increase? - ACTU Australian Unions

Do I Have to Apply to get The Minimum Wage increase?

Chelley asks:

My boss has put up a notice at work saying if we want to apply for the increase in our wages that’s meant to come in on July 1st we need to email him by the Friday our pays are done, which is next week and he’ll let us know his decision asap. Is this true?  And if it is, what should I put in my application?

Hi Chelley, I think your boss is a little confused. The minimum wage increase which comes into effect on the first pay period after July 1st 2018 applies to all workers who get their pay rate set by either a modern award or the national minimum wage (which applies to workers who aren’t covered by a modern award or enterprise agreement).

The pay rise isn’t something which workers have to apply for and then their boss decides whether or not to grant it; the increase has been decided on by the Fair work Commission and is law.

So what does this mean in dollars and cents? The increase handed down by the FWC means that the new national minimum wage will be $719.20 per week, which is an increase of $24.32 for a full time adult worker. The new minimum hourly adult  rate will be $18.93 per hour. Workers who are covered by a modern award will see their pay rates rise by 3.5%. Modern awards set special minimum wage rates for certain industries and occupations. Please note though Chelley that this only applies to workers who are covered by Australia’s national workplace relations system. Some workers are covered by state workplace relations system.  You can find out more about which system you are covered by here: or give us a call on 1300 486 466 and we can give you some general information.

Although this isn’t as much of an increase as the ACTU would like to see, it is certainly a step in the right direction.

So what can you do if your you don’t see more in your first pay packet of the new financial year? Well, you can all rest assured that if it’s not there, your boss has to pay it – no ifs or buts and if they don’t, you can chase it up. As it sounds like there are a few of you who work there perhaps you might all feel more comfortable acting as a group? Why not give us a call on our toll free number 1300 486 466? Don’t worry it’s a confidential service so your employer won’t know you’ve called us.

Of course, if you’re already a member of a union, you should call them about this. If you’re not, we can help you find out who the right union would be for your job and how much the fees would be. You can even claim the fees as a tax deduction when you put in your tax return. You could invest part of your pay rise in protecting yourself at work!

Please note that the information given on this page is general information only and is not legal advice.