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National Minimum Wage

The National Minimum Wage applies to all employees, including full-time, part-time, temporary and casual employees, except the following categories or employees who are excluded from its provisions:

  • Employees who are close relatives of the employer, such as a spouse, father, mother, son, daughter, brother or sister;
  • Employees undergoing structured training such as an apprenticeship (other than hairdressing apprenticeships)

For the purposes of the Act, the following payments are regarded as wages:

  • normal basic pay, as well as any overtime
  • shift allowances or other similar payments
  • any fee, bonus or commission
  • any holiday, sick or maternity pay
  • any other return or payment for work (whether made under the contract of employment or otherwise),
  • any sum payable to an employee in lieu of notice of termination of employment.

The following payments are not regarded as wages:

  • any payment of expenses incurred by the employee in carrying out his/her employment
  • any payment by way of a pension, allowance or gratuity in connection with the death, retirement or resignation of the employee or as compensation for loss of office
  • any payment referable to the employee's redundancy
  • any payment to the employee otherwise than in his/her capacity as an employee
  • any payment in kind or benefit in kind.
Under the Employment Miscellaneous Provisions Act 2018, rates for employees under 18 and those over 18 have been simplified and will be solely based on age.

Trainee rates of pay have been abolished

From 4 March 2019, the following rates apply:
AgeAmount% of NMW
Under 18€6.8670%
18 years old€7.8480%
19 years old€8.8290%
National Minimum Wage (20+)€9.80100%
Previous National Minimum Wage rates as they apply to certain categories of employees prior to 4 March 2019, are listed in the table below


NMW Hourly Rates from 1st January 2018

NMW Hourly Rates from 1st January 2017

NMW Hourly Rates from 1st January 2016

Minimum Hourly Rate of Pay (01/07/2011 - 31/12/2015)

 % of NMW

Experienced Adult Worker






Under age 18






In the first year after the date of first employment over age 18, whether or not the employee changes employer during the year *






In the second year after the date of first employment over age 18, whether or not the employee changes employer during the year *






In a course of training or study over age 18, undertaken in normal working hours **

First 1/3rd period






Second 1/3rd period






Third 1/3rd period






NB - Each 1/3rd period must be at least 1 month and no longer than 12 months.

Experienced adult worker named by the Labour Court in granting a temporary exemption to an employer from paying the national minimum hourly rate of pay.

NB - The minimum period of temporary exemption is 3 months and the maximum period is 12 months.

Labour Court will decide the lower hourly rate of pay that the employee must be paid for the period of the temporary exemption.

* Employment experience prior to age 18 is not taken into account for these rates.

** Training must be as prescribed by the Minister in regulations. (Please see S.I. No. 99/2000 - National Minimum Wage Act, 2000 (Prescribed Courses of Study Or Training) Regulations, 2000)

The National Minimum Wage Act may be viewed or downloaded HERE.

The Order giving effect to the New National Minimum Wage Rates from 1st January 2018 is available for viewing or download HERE.

The Employment Miscellaneous Provisions Act 2018 cab be viewed or downloaded HERE.