The Basic Conditions of Employment Act, 1997 regulates minimum terms and conditions of employment. Certain of the provisions of the Act do not apply to employees who earn more than an amount determined from time to time by the Minister of Labour. The current threshold is R149 736 per annum.

On 13 May 2011, the Minister made a new determination. With effect from 1 July 2011, the threshold will be R172 000 per annum. This means that the Act's regime dealing with ordinary hours of work, overtime, compressed working weeks, averaging of hours of work, meal intervals, daily and weekly rest periods, and payment for work on Sundays, night work and public holidays will be extended to all employees earning less than R172 000 per annum (or R14 333.33 per month). Employees presently earning between R149 736 and R172 000 will become subject to the provisions of the Act from July.

For this purpose, an employee's earnings is his or her regular annual remuneration before deductions such as, for example, income tax and pension and medical aid contributions. Certain allowances and awards and overtime payments are not to be included.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.