Pay rates for apprentices

This page is for: 
EmployerEmployee / worker

This information is only relevant to employers and employees in the WA state industrial relations system – sole traders, unincorporated partnerships, unincorporated trusts and some incorporated or not for profit organisations. Find out more on the Guide to who is in the WA state system page.

If you operate or are employed by a Pty Ltd business – you can find information on this topic on the Fair Work Ombudsman website.

Specific training wages apply for apprentices and trainees working under a training contract registered with the Department of Training and Workforce Development Apprenticeship Office (formerly the Apprenticentre).

Apprentices paid under WA awards

Many WA awards contain specific rates of pay for apprentices. If a WA award applies to the work performed by an apprentice, but the WA award does not contain an apprentice pay rate relevant to that employee, the apprentice should be paid no less than the minimum wage for an award free apprentice (see below for more details).

If the apprentice is an adult (21 or over) they must be paid whichever is the higher rate of the relevant pay rate under the WA award or the minimum pay rate for adult apprentices.

Do you know what your WA award says about apprentices? - Check the relevant provisions regarding pay, hours, overtime, tool allowances and other allowances for apprentices on the WA award summaries page 

Award free apprentices

If an apprentice is award free (not covered by a WA award), they are to be paid the minimum rate of pay for an award free apprentice. The minimum rate will vary depending on the term (length) of the apprenticeship and which year the apprentice is currently undertaking.

On 26 June 2020 the Western Australian Industrial Relations Commission (WAIRC) issued the 2020 State Wage Case decision. The WAIRC decision grants a 1.75% per week increase in the state minimum wage from the first pay period on or after 1 January 2021.

The apprentice pay rates on this page apply from the first pay period on or after 1 July 2020 through to 31 December 2020.

New minimum wage information reflecting the rates that take effect from 1 January 2021 will be issued later in 2020. Subscribe to Wageline News to be notified when the new 1 January 2021 pay rates are available on the Wageline website.

If the apprentice is an adult (21 or over) he or she must be paid whichever is the higher rate of the relevant minimum pay rate for term (length) and year of their apprenticeship or the minimum pay rate for adult apprentices. The minimum pay rate for an award free apprentice who has reached 21 years of age is $638.20 per week.

Minimum wage rates - award free apprentices  - 4 year apprenticeship

Year of apprenticeship Total rate per week
First year $357.40
Second year $468.00
Third year $638.20
Fourth year $748.80

 

 

Minimum wage rates - award free apprentice - 3.5 year apprenticeship​

Year of apprenticeship Total rate per week
First six months $357.40
7-18 months $468.00
19-30 months $638.20
31-42 months $748.80

 

 

Minimum wage rates - award free apprentices - 3 year apprenticeship​

Year of apprenticeship Total rate per week
First year $468.00
Second year $638.20
Third year $748.80

 

The Minimum pay rates for award free employees publication also details the pay rates for award free apprentices in printable format, and provides details on major employment entitlements for award free employees. 

​Allowances for apprentices

Some WA awards provide for certain allowances to be paid to apprentices. The requirement to pay tool allowance under WA awards applies regardless of whether apprentices are receiving financial grants or government incentives to purchase their own tools.

Attending TAFE or other off-the-job training

An apprentice must be paid for the time spent at TAFE (or other off the job training) as normal working hours. An employer is not required to pay TAFE fees on behalf of the apprentice.  

Need more information?

Visit the Department of Training and Workforce Development Apprenticeship Office website for further information about apprenticeshipswww.dtwd.wa.gov.au/apprenticeship-office

Contact Wageline for information on pay and other employment obligations for apprentices.

Record keeping

All state system employers are legally required to keep employment records that detail time worked, leave taken and pay received by employees.

Learn more on the Employment records - Employer obligations page

 

 

Share this page:

Last modified: