Yesterday, the Fair Work Commission handed down its decision in relation to the Annual Wage Review. This has been a highly anticipated decision, given the significant increase to inflation and cost of living pressures, over the last twelve months.
From 1 July 2022, the National Minimum Wage will increase by 5.2%, which amounts to an increase of $40 per week. From 1 July 2022, the new National Minimum Wage will be $812.60 per week or $21.38 per hour.
All modern award rates will likewise increase by 4.6% for wages above $869.60 a week and by $40 a week for wages below $869.60 a week.
The increase follows a promise by the new Labour Government to ensure that there will be an increase in line with the rise in the cost of living. The Australian Government made a last minute submission to the Fair Work Commission to ask that it ensure the real wages of low paid workers do not go backwards.
The National Minimum Wage increase will commence from the first pay period following 1 July 2022. This also applies to all Modern Awards other than the aviation, hospitality and tourism industries, where the increase will occur form 1 October 2022. This means that employees covered by the following Modern Awards will only receive their increase from 1 October 2022:
- Aircraft Cabin Crew Award
- Airline Operations – Ground Staff Award
- Air Pilots Award
- Airport Employees Award
- Airservices Australia Enterprise Award 2016
- Hospitality Industry (General) Award
- Registered and Licensed Clubs Award
- Restaurant Industry Award
- Marine Tourism and Charter Vessels Award
- Alpine Resorts Award
Increase to Superannuation
From 1 July 2022, there are also some significant changes to superannuation. They are:
- The removal of the $450 super guarantee threshold – which means all employers are now required to make super guarantee contributions to their eligible employees’ super funds regardless of how much the employee is paid; and
- The superannuation guaranteed rate will increase from 10% to 10.5%.
What you need to do now
As a result of these changes and legislative reforms, we recommend that you:
- Check the award coverage of your staff;
- Check whether your employees earn award wages or are paid on all up basis (for example, a salary). If the latter, determine whether this needs to be increased for award covered staff to ensure award compliance;
- Ensure your payroll system is updated to give effect to the forthcoming increases;
- Review and modify your payment of superannuation for employees who earn less than $450 a week; and
- Increase the superannuation contribution rate to 10.5% for all eligible employees, from 1 July 2022.
If you require any further assistance or information in relation to this client alert, please do not hesitate to contact us.
This alert tip is not intended to constitute, and should not be treated as, legal advice.
This article is for general information purposes only and does not constitute legal or professional advice. It should not be used as a substitute for legal advice relating to your particular circumstances. Please also note that the law may have changed since the date of this article.