Increase in Basic Conditions of Employment Act earning threshold effective 1 April 2024

The Department of Employment and Labour has adjusted the earnings threshold for the Basic Conditions of Employment Act 75 of 1997 (the BCEA) as of 1 April 2024.

Here are a few key takeaways from the adjustment to the earnings threshold:

What is the earnings threshold?

Employees earning above the earnings threshold are excluded from certain provisions which would otherwise have been afforded to them under the BCEA.

What is the change to the threshold, and when will it be effective?

As of April 1, 2024, the new earnings threshold will be set at R254,371.67, an increase of R3,261.08 from 2023’s threshold. This equates to R21,198.00 per month.

What does this change in threshold mean for employers and employees?

Employees who earn above the new threshold will not be entitled to certain protections afforded to workers who earn below this threshold, such as ordinary hours of work, overtime, compressed working weeks, averaging hours of work, meal intervals, daily and weekly rest periods, and pay for Sundays, night work, and public holidays.

Moreover, employees earning above the threshold are not considered as vulnerable as those earning below the threshold. Regarding the Employment Equity Act, these employees are not allowed to refer unfair discrimination disputes to the CCMA for arbitration unless all parties agree to it or the matter is related to sexual harassment.

However, employees earning below the threshold are protected by all BCEA sections. These employees furthermore enjoy additional protection in terms of fixed-term contracts and temporary employment. Such employees cannot simply be placed on fixed-term contracts over three months without valid justification for such contracts. Employers are thus urged to assess their current employment contracts and remuneration structures to ascertain which employees fall under what category and ensure compliance with the Act.

If you would like to learn more about this earning threshold then please feel free to contact Invictus Group.