New Brunswick Minimum Wage 2021

New Brunswick Minimum Wage 2021

Written by Bryan Daly
Fact-checked by Caitlin Wood
Last Updated October 5, 2021

According to Canadian labor standards, minimum wage is the lowest amount that an employer can legally pay an employee hourly for their work. That limit varies according to several economic factors and is different in every province. Read this to learn what the current minimum wage in New Brunswick is and if the rules apply to you.

Why Does Minimum Wage Vary By Province/Territory?

As mentioned, Canadian minimum wage limits vary according to the specific region that an employee works in primarily. Our country’s present-day rules have been in place since 1996 and are officially listed in the Canada Labor Code. 

Each provincial and territorial government has its own regulations for protecting non-unionized workers, introducing labor incentives, handling inequality and triggering economic growth, as well as reducing poverty and low-paying jobs. 

A particular region’s minimum wage is also adjusted according to the regulations, labor standards and legislative rules of its government or independent board, along with average wage rates, inflation levels and other elements that affect its economy. 

Today’s Approach To Minimum Wage In Canada

Before 1996, the Canada Labor Code stated different minimum wage rules for men, women and children. The Canadian government was also having trouble adjusting federal wages to meet the rate standards of every province and territory.    

So, in 1996, the Canada Labor Code was amended to address this problem and apply the same standards to all working adults. To ensure its relevance in times of countrywide economic or social change, Canada’s federal minimum wage now automatically adjusts alongside its provincial and territorial rates. 

Check out what documents you need to find a job in Canada.

What Is The Hourly Minimum Wage In New Brunswick (NB) In 2021?

As of April 1st, 2021, New Brunswick’s minimum wage is fixed at $11.75 per hour (up from $11.70 on April 1st, 2020). Under section 9 of the province’s Employment Standards Act, employers must pay any salary, commission or piece-work based employees at least minimum wage for each hour of labor they perform.

Find out the difference between working as an employee and working as a contractor.

Minimum Wage Exceptions In NB

Although most traditional New Brunswick employees must be paid at least minimum wage, there are exceptions to province’s regulations, such as:

Construction Workers 

The Minimum Wage for Categories of Employees in Crown Construction Work Regulation – Employment Standards Act lists the minimum wage rules for different types of construction workers. It defines qualified employees as those who work in “building” construction (constructing, modelling or repairing buildings) or “road and bridge” construction (roads, sidewalks, etc.) on the same site. 

Here some common examples of a New Brunswick construction worker’s minimum hourly wage, payable on or after April 1st, 2019:

Job TitleHourly Minimum Wage Limit
Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Mechanic $24.57
Electrician $20.62
General Labourer $12.63
Plumber, Pipefitter or Steamfitter$23.53
Security Guard $13.92

Counsellors & Summer Camp Employees 

The Minimum Wage for Counsellor and Program Staff at Residential Summer Camps Regulation – Employment Standards Act states that employees who teach, supervise or work closely with campers also have different minimum wage rules. Residential summer camps refer to campgrounds that are considered charitable or non-profit organizations and are open during June, July, August or September. Plus, room and board must be provided for qualified staff.

According to section 9 of the Act, summer camp employers cannot deduct any amount of wages from their employees salaries for lodging or board. Like all wages in Canada, minimum wage levels for counsellors and summer camp employees vary by year: 

Payment PeriodMinimum Wage
April 1, 2019 – March 31, 2020 (inclusive)$440 weekly 
April 1, 2020 – March 31, 2021 (inclusive)$470.80
April 1, 2020 – March 31, 2022 (inclusive)$501.60

Minimum Wage And Minimum Hours In New Brunswick (NB)

In NB, employers are required to compensate qualified employees for the greater of 3 hours pay at the province’s minimum wage rate OR the hours that the employee has worked at their normal wage rate OR the minimum rate applied to those hours. 

To qualify for a minimum number of paid hours, employees have to work when their employer orders them to and their normal wage must be less than twice the current minimum wage rate. They also need to work more than 3 hours consecutively per shift. 

Here’s an example of how minimum reporting wage works in New Brunswick:

  • An employee works 44 hours or fewer per week.
  • Their regular wage rate is $14.00 per hour.
  • They report to work as scheduled but get sent home after only 2 hours.
  • They should then earn the greater of the two amounts for their shift:
    • $35.25 instead of $28.00 (3 hours at $11.75 vs 2 hours at $12.50)

Are you looking for a job? Try using the Canadian Job Bank.

Minimum Wage And Overtime Pay In New Brunswick (NB) 

New Brunswick’s overtime wage rate is set at 1.5 times that of its minimum wage rate. So, for 2021, employees who qualify for overtime should receive at least $17.63 per hour. Employers can schedule employees for overtime work but must compensate them for every hour they put in. Additionally, an employer cannot bank an employee’s hours. 

Generally speaking, overtime pay in New Brunswick activates when an employee has worked more than 44 hours during a single week. Here’s an example of how overtime pay works in NB, using the same regular wage rate of $14.00 hourly: 

  • An employee works 50 hours a week at $14.00 per hour.
  • At their regular wage, they will make $616.00 for the week (44/hr x $14.00).
  • Overtime is applied to their extra hours (50 hrs – 44 hrs = 6 hrs x $17.63).
  • Their total overtime pay is $105.78, combined with their regular wages.
  • The employee should make $721.78 that week ($105.78 + $616.00).

Minimum Wage And Statutory Holidays In New Brunswick (NB)

In New Brunswick, employees can receive special pay for these 7 statutory holidays:

  • Canada Day
  • Christmas
  • Family Day (every 3rd Monday of February, as of 2018)
  • Good Friday
  • Labour Day
  • New Brunswick Day
  • New Year’s Day 
  • Remembrance Day 

To be eligible, employees must work at the same job for at least 90 days within the past 12 months. This rule applies to full-time, part-time or casual employees. Pay rates vary depending on the type shift and the amount of hours an employee works.

NB employers can tally up an employee’s statutory holiday pay using two methods:

A) Pay Them An Ordinary Day’s Wages

If an employee works during a holiday period, the employer can pay them a regular day’s wages as compensation. Their pay rate is tallied according to how many hours and shifts they’ve worked within the past 30 days. That amount is then divided by the number of days they’ve worked in total. Keep in mind that this applies whether the employee works on the actual date of the holiday or not. 

B) Pay Them 4% Of Their Gross Wages Throughout The Year

If their employee works during statutory holiday periods, an employer is allowed to compensate them for 4% of the total gross wages they make annually. That 4% is equal to what the average full-time employee would get paid on a holiday with Option A and is dispersed across their paychecks little by little throughout the year.

Typically, Option B is a better choice for paying casual and shift-work employees. 

What Happens If An Employee Works On A Statutory Holiday?

In NB, employers can use either of the above methods to calculate an employee’s normal statutory holiday pay. However, if the employee works on the actual holiday, they must receive 1.5 times their regular hourly wage rate during the day too. For instance: 

  • The employee makes $11.75 per hour on a regular day
  • On a statutory holiday, they receive 1.5 times that wage ($11.75 x 1.5)
  • They should now make $17.63 per hour during the holiday

Minimum Wage New Brunswick FAQs

Can an employer require an employee to work overtime in New Brunswick? 

Yes, it is legal for an employer to schedule their employees for overtime, as long as they pay them the standard overtime rate of 1.5 times their normal wage for every hour.

How is vacation pay calculated in New Brunswick?

No matter how many hours they’ve worked, all New Brunswick employees must take a certain amount of time off every year so that their employer can give them their annual vacation pay. That said, an employee can only qualify for this benefit once they’ve been with the same employer for at least 12 months.  Similar to holiday pay, qualified employees are entitled to 4% of their gross yearly wages as vacation pay or 6% if they’ve worked with the employer for 8 years or more. 

Do employers have to pay for training hours in New Brunswick?

Absolutely. By law, New Brunswick employers must pay employees their normal hourly wage for any training and staff meetings their job requires during or outside their regular work hours. Training and meeting hours are set by the employer. 

How does New Brunswick’s minimum wage compare across Canada?

New Brunswick presently has the second lowest minimum wage rate of any Canadian province or territory, next to Saskatchewan (with the lowest hourly minimum wage of $11.45). The highest minimum wage in Canada is in Nunavut, at $16.00 per hour.

Not Sure If Your Employer Is Paying You Fairly?

While New Brunswick currently ranks 12th on Canada’s wage scale, no employer should pay you less than minimum wage, even if you’re a student or your job offers up gratuities, as some servers receive in other provinces and territories. If you think your boss isn’t paying you fairly, contact the Government of New Brunswick right away.    

Rating of 5/5 based on 2 votes.

Bryan is a graduate of Dawson College and Concordia University. He has been writing for Loans Canada for five years, covering all things related to personal finance, and aims to pursue the craft of professional writing for many years to come. In his spare time, he maintains a passion for editing, writing screenplays, staying fit, and traveling the world in search of the coolest sights our planet has to offer. Bryan uses the BMO Cash Back Mastercard to earn cash back on everything from boring bill payments to exciting excursions. He is also a strong saver, holding both a TFSA and an RRSP account in order to prepare for his future while taking full advantage of tax benefits.

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