Minimum working age

There is no minimum working age in South Australia.

If you are thinking of employing a young worker be aware that:

  • a child of compulsory school age (between 6 and 16 years of age) cannot be employed during school hours
  • a child may not work at a time, such as late at night or early in the morning, that is likely to render them unfit to attend school or obtain the proper benefit from attendance.

Wage rates

Minimum entitlements for wages and conditions of employment are most often found in enterprise agreements or modern awards. Employers must provide their employees with at least their minimum entitlements.

Some employees are not covered by an award or an enterprise agreement. For these employees there is a National Employment Standard, including a set minimum wage, that provides a safety net of conditions that cannot be overridden by the terms of enterprise agreements or awards.

State system

The following minimum wage rates apply to the South Australian industrial relations system (state system), which covers employers and workers in the South Australian public and local government sectors as well as prescribed state government business enterprises.

These rates do not apply to workers under a contract of employment or covered by a State Award, unless their current wage rates are lower, in which case the higher rate of the minimum wage must be paid.

Worker age Full-time worker
Weekly (38 hours)
Part-time worker
Casual worker
Adult (21 years and over) $732.30 $19.27 $24.09
20 $659.10 $17.34 $21.68
19 $585.80 $15.42 $19.27
18 $512.60 $13.49 $16.86
17 $439.40 $11.56 $14.45
Under 17 $366.20 $9.64 $12.05
Junior apprentice (first year) $307.60   
Junior apprentice (second year) $402.80   
Junior apprentice (third year) $549.20   
Junior apprentice (fourth year) $644.40   
Adult apprentice (21 years and over) $732.30   

Minimum wage rates are also set for:

National industrial relations system

There is also a federal minimum wage for the whole of the private sector (including private schools, universities and the non-government community services sector) which is covered by the national industrial relations system.

Employers and their workers covered by this system can check their obligations and entitlements via the Fair Work Ombudsman website or call the Fair Work Infoline on 13 13 94.

Page last updated: 29 October 2020