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Wages and the Minimum Wage in The Bahamas

Posted by M. Margaret Gonsalves-Sabola | Jun 04, 2018 | 2 Comments

In The Bahamas, the Employment Act and Minimum Wages Act explain how and when employers must pay employees their wages for hours worked. Bahamian law establishes a minimum wage and overtime wages for workers.

The minimum wage in The Bahamas is $5.25 per hour. All employers must pay their employees at least the minimum wage. “Employer” for purposes of the law includes people, such as the owner of a business or the managing agent, and companies or undertakings that employ any people to work under an employment contract, employ anyone as a contract worker, or use a commission agent.

Again, all employees must receive at least the minimum wage per hour. Employees who enter into a contract for a set wage that is less than the minimum wage must instead receive the minimum wage. Apprentices must be paid the minimum wage, and the Minimum Wages Act explains that apprentices cannot be forced to pay premiums to their employers except under certain circumstances.

The Bahamas has established standard hours of work for most workers. Employees who work more than the standard forty hours per week must be paid overtime pay, with the exception of supervisors and managers. Overtime pay is one and one-half times the regular hourly rate, and two times the hourly rate on public holidays and days off. For example, an employee who earns the minimum wage of $5.25 per hour would be paid $7.875 per hour for any hours worked over forty in a workweek.

Employers should keep records of the wages they pay so that they can show compliance with Bahamian employment laws. The Employment Act and Minimum Wage Act describe the various penalties that employers will face if they do not properly pay workers.

To find out more about employment law in The Bahamas, visit Gonsalves-Sabola Chambers online or call the office at +1 242 326 6400.

About the Author

M. Margaret Gonsalves-Sabola

M. Margaret Gonsalves-Sabola is a civil and commercial litigation attorney and an accredited civil and commercial mediator. Margaret has over 21 years' experience in legal practice in the United Kingdom, Jamaica and The Bahamas.


Matt Reply

Posted Feb 17, 2021 at 10:17:19

Thank you for your response to my previous question adding to that so am I correct that if a work visa is rejected after say 5 years the employee is entitled to 5 months salary as a type of severance pay? And what options would an employee have is this was not done by the employers?

M. Margaret Gonsalves-Sabola Reply

Posted Feb 17, 2021 at 11:11:42

It is unlikely that an employee would be entitled to compensation if the work permit was refused unless the employment contract provides for compensation in such circumstances.

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