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What Factors Affect Minimum Wage for Domestic Workers?

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  • Written By: C.B. Fox
  • Edited By: Susan Barwick
  • Last Modified Date: 21 November 2016
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There are a few things that can affect the minimum wage for domestic workers. With a few exceptions, these workers are covered under national minimum wage laws and must earn at least the hourly rate set by the country they are working in. Babysitters, live-in house keepers, and nannies or young domestic workers, may, however, be paid at a lower rate.

The main factor that affects the minimum wage for domestic workers is the country that worker is employed in. In most parts of the world, a minimum wage is set by the national government to ensure that workers are paid a fair hourly, weekly, or monthly salary. In countries that make use of a minimum wage, domestic workers are entitled to receive at least that rate of pay. Employers may pay domestic workers at rates above the minimum wage if they value the services at a higher level or if the domestic worker is involved in tasks that involve some level of education, such as tutoring, or teaching young children.

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The state, province, or city in which a domestic worker is employed may also have an effect on the worker's pay. In some parts of the world, such as the United States, the nationally set minimum wage is not considered high enough to cover the cost of living across the nation. States or cities can choose to set their own minimum wage at a rate above the national minimum. In these cases, the minimum wage for domestic workers will be the higher rate of pay.

The exact nature of the work a domestic worker does may also affect the amount he or she is paid. Some domestic tasks, such as babysitting, may be exempted from minimum wage laws. The minimum wage for domestic workers who live in the house they work in may also be adjusted to account for the fact that the worker receives room and board. In some nations, live-in domestic workers may earn a small stipend rather than a regular salary, especially if the worker is from another nation and in a language study program.

A domestic worker who is young may also be paid at a lower rate. In some nations, workers of any sort below a certain age, often 18 or 20, may be paid less than older workers. The minimum wage for domestic workers under these age cut-offs is usually raised to meet the national minimum wage after a few months of employment.

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