Financial Data
Updated 26 Feb 2020


Back to basics

The Basic Conditions of Employment Act applies to all employers and workers and regulates employment conditions such as leave, working hours, employment contracts, employee records, deductions, pay slips, overtime and termination.


17 December 2008  Share  0 comments  Print


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If you do not abide by the Basic Conditions of Employment Act policies the Department of Labour may fine you or sentence you to prison.

Here is a summary of the most important provisions of the Act:

  • No employer shall require or permit an employee to work more than 45 hours in any week and nine hours in any day.
  • No employer shall require or permit an employee to work overtime except by agreement, and not more than 10 hours of overtime per week.
  • Overtime must be paid at 1,5 times the employee's normal wage.
  • An employee must have a meal interval of 60 minutes after five hours of work.
  • An employee must have a daily rest period of 12 consecutive hours and a weekly rest period of 36 consecutive hours.
  • An employee who works occasionally on Sunday must receive double pay and an employee who works ordinarily on a Sunday must receive 1,5 times the normal wage. Work on a public holiday is by agreement and must be paid at double rate.
  • Employees are entitled to 21 consecutive days' annual leave or by agreement, one day for every 17 days worked.
  • An employer must not pay an employee instead of granting leave except on termination of employment.
  • An employee is entitled to six weeks paid sick leave in a period of 36 months.
  • A pregnant employee is entitled to four consecutive months of maternity leave. The employer is not obligated to pay a salary during this time.
  • Full-time employees are entitled to three days of paid family responsibility leave per year. An employer may ask for reasonable proof thereof.


Please note that not all conditions apply to all levels of workers. For more information, visit www.labour.gov.za

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