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Nova Scotia Minimum Wage – Average Salary of Top Jobs

Every employer in Nova Scotia must pay an empoyee the new minimum wage. This includes hours spent in work place waiting to perform duty.

Nova Scotia minimum wage has changed as of April 1, 2021. This means that every employer must pay their employees the new minimum wage. Therefore, all employees in Nova Scotia will now receive at least $12.95 per hour.

However, any increases in minimum wage must occur on April 1st. But the public must know of the changes in advance on January 1 of that year. Because of this, the government of Nova Scotia announced the new wage on January 1, 2021.   

Generally, the minimum wage contains requirements for some groups. However, certain groups like those in Construction and Property Maintenance are not included. These groups have special minimum wage orders according to Labour Standards. 

Whenever an employer calls an employer to work outside the work hours. It is expected that the employer must pay the employee for at least three hours of work at the minimum wage rate. This still applies even when the employee works for less than 3 hours.

For instance, if the employer pays the employee $15 per hour. The employer will still pay the employee at least $38.85, even if the employee has worked for only an hour. 

Furthermore, employers must also pay for hours spent at the workplace waiting to perform work. What it means is that an employer must be paid the minimum wage for hours spent to get busy at work. 

In this article

Nova Scotia Minimum Wage Order

Nova Scotia minimum wage is structured into three: 

  1. General Minimum Wage Order 
  2. Minimum Wage Order for Construction and Property Maintenance
  3. Minimum Wage Order for Logging and Forest Operations

General Nova Scotia Minimum Wage Order

As mentioned above, the general minimum wage order sets the minimum wage rate. This is the least an employer must pay an employee per hour of work. In addition to that, it also sets employment standards for the following:

  • overtime, for some groups
  • being called into work at times other than scheduled working hours
  • employees waiting for work on the work premises
  • piecework
  • deductions for board, lodging, and meals
  • deductions for uniforms

Also included in the minimum wage is how much employers can take from an employee’s minimum wage for board and lodging that the employer provides. These amounts include:

  • boarding and lodging for each week: $68.20
  • boarding only for each week: $55.55
  • lodging only for each week: $15.45
  • single meal: $3.65

Employees Not Under the Minimum Wage Rules in Nova Scotia

The minimum wage rules do not apply to the following employees:

  • certain farm employees
  • apprentices employed under the terms of an apprenticeship agreement under the Apprenticeship and Trades Qualifications Act
  • anyone receiving training under government
  • employees at a non-profit playground
  • real estate and car salespeople
  • commissioned salespeople who work outside the employer’s premises
  • insurance agents licensed under the Insurance Act
  • if you work on a fishing boat
  • employees who fall under the minimum wage orders concerning Logging and Forest Operations and Construction and Property Maintenance
  • if you do domestic service in a private home and are working for the householder
  • employees who do domestic service in a private home
  • athletes while engaged in activities related to their athletic endeavor

Nova Scotia Minimum Wages For Top Professions

Following the announcement of the new minimum wage in Nova Scotia, many occupations also changed their minimum salary. Below is the average salary of top occupations in Nova Scotia.

Teachers Salary in Nova Scotia

The average salary of a teacher in Nova Scotia is $76,133 per year. 

Normally, salaries for teachers increase on different scales. This is based on the level of training. However, there is always a five percent increase in the first five years. Then, after that, your pay depends totally on the level of training you have.  

However,  the highest salary you can receive as a teacher in Nova Scotia is $92,286.

Nova Scotia Minimum Wage For Massage Therapist

The average salary of a massage therapist in Nova Scotia is $64,981 annually. 

There are great job opportunities for Massage therapists (NOC 3236) in Nova Scotia over the next 3 years. Many factors contribute to this including: 

  • employment growth retirements.
  • small number of unemployed workers 

Average Salary For Clinical Psychologists in Nova Scotia

The average annual pay for a Clinical Psychologist in Nova Scotia is $103,540 annually.

Top Cities For Clinical Psychologists in Nova Scotia

The following cities in Nova Scotia offer the highest pay for Clinical Psychologists in the province. They include:

City    Annual Salary    Hourly Wage

Kentville    $109,259    $52.53

New Glasgow    $106,945    $51.42

Truro    $104,150    $50.07

Halifax    $99,573    $47.87

Fall River    $95,388    $45.86

Lower Sackville    $95,214    $45.78

Dartmouth    $94,788    $45.57

Cole Harbour    $93,010    $44.72

Sydney    $92,850    $44.64

Glace Bay    $91,343    $43.91

Clinical Psychology Related Jobs in Nova Scotia

Apart from Clinical Psychology, other professions related to it also pay well in Nova Scotia.

Top Paying Clinical Psychologists in Nova Scotia

Therefore, the following jobs related to Clinical Psychology are among the top-paying jobs in Nova Scotia:

Job Title    Annual Salary    Hourly Wage

Locum Clinical Psychologist    $122,358   $52.64

Contract Psychologist    $117,801    $56.64

Licensed Psychologist    $117,662    $56.57

Psychologist Contractor    $116,285    $55.91

Clinical Psychologist     $115,584    $55.57

Occupational Therapist salary in Nova Scotia

The average salary for an occupational therapist is $368 per day in Nova Scotia.

Top companies for Occupational Therapists in Nova Scotia

If you want to work as an Occupational Therapist in Nova Scotia, you can try any of these top companies:

  • Infinity Health
  • Salary: $621 per day
  • Innovative Occupational Therapy Services
  • Salary: $570 per day
  • Government of the Northwest Territories
  • Salary: $564 per day
  • Abilities Neurological Rehabilitation
  • Salary: $547 per day
  • FunctionAbility Rehabilitation Services
  • Salary: $524 per day

Highest paying cities in Nova Scotia for Occupational Therapists

  • Halifax, NS
  • Salary: $374 per day
  • New Glasgow, NS
  • Salary: $365 per day
  • Dartmouth, NS 
  • Salary: $364 per day
  • Middleton, NS
  • Salary: $364 per day
  • Yarmout, NS
  • Salary: $364 per day

Nova Scotia Minimum Wage for Welders

The average salary for a welder is $23.03 per hour in Nova Scotia.

Top companies for Welders in Nova Scotia

The top companies in Nova Scotia for welders and their salaries include:

  • Acden
  • Salary: $49.14 per hour
  • Ledcor
  • Salary: $44.90 per hour
  • Kiewit
  • Salary: $40.87 per hour
  • Northern Lakes College
  • Salary: $38.47 per hour
  • Fanshawe College
  • Salary: $38.26 per hour

Highest paying cities in Nova Scotia for Welders

  • Goodwood, NS
  • Salary: $26.40 per hour
  • Halifax, NS
  • Salary: $25.74 per hour
  • Dartmouth, NS
  • Salary: $24.37 per hour
  • Middleton, NS
  • Salary: $24.15 per hour

Average Salary of Medical X-Ray Tech in Nova Scotia

The average pay for a Medical X-Ray Technician is $62,043 a year and $30 an hour in Nova Scotia, Canada. 

Top companies for X-ray Technicians in Nova Scotia

  • Yukon Hospital Corporation
  • Salary: $40.83 per hour
  • Alberta Health Services
  • Salary: $39.00 per hour
  • Unity Health Toronto
  • Salary: $38.82 per hour
  • Lakeridge Health
  • Salary: $38.11 per hour
  • West Nipissing General Hospital
  • Salary: $37.44 per hour

Highest paying cities in Nova Scotia for X-ray Technicians

  • New Glasgow, NS
  • Salary: $31.91 per hour
  • Antigonish, NS
  • Salary: $31.91per hour
  • Amherst, NS
  • Salary: $31.91 per hour
  • Halifax, NS
  • Salary: $31.91 per hour
  • Truro, NS
  • Salary: $31.91 per hour

Civil Engineer salary in Nova Scotia

The average salary for a civil engineer is $21,798 per year in Nova Scotia.

Top companies for Civil Engineers in Nova Scotia

  • Northwest Territories Power Corporation
  • Salary: $143,957 per year
  • RAM
  • Salary: $90,562 per year
  • National Capital Commission
  • Salary: $80,695 per year
  • City Of Prince George
  • Salary: $73,512 per year
  • British Columbia Institute of Technology
  • Salary: $72,997 per year

Nova Scotia Minimum Wage For Mechanical Engineer

The average salary for an engineer is $57,438 per year in Nova Scotia.

Top companies for Engineers in Nova Scotia

  • Worley
  • Salary: $176,638 per year
  • Coastal Shipping
  • Salary: $135,000 per year
  • London Regional Cancer Program
  • Salary: $122,899 per year
  • Bombardier
  • Salary: $118,210 per year
  • City of Delta
  • Salary: $117,254 per year

Highest paying cities in Nova Scotia for Engineers

  • Point Aconi, NS
  • Salary: $76,529 per year
  • Lingan, NS
  • Salary: $76,505 per year
  • Point Tupper, NS
  • Salary: $74,862 per year
  • Trenton, NS 
  • Salary: $74,513 per year
  • Dartmouth, NS
  • Salary: $53,844 per year

Employment of Children

Usually, children in Nova Scotia are not paid. Therefore, the Labour Standards Code has rules about when children may be employed in Nova Scotia. 

Generally, the law in Nova Scotia divides children into two groups:

  1. those under 14 
  2. those under 16.

Children Under 14

Children under the age of 14 do not receive wages in Nova Scotia. As such, a child who is below 14 years cannot do works that: 

  • may be be harmful to the child’s health 
  • will keep the child out of school. 

Therefore, it is against the law to employ a child under 14 to do work 

  • for more than 8 hours a day 
  • between the hours of 10 pm of any day and 6 am of the next day
  • for more than 3 hours on a school day

Children Under 16

Children under 16 but above 14 can be employed in Nova Scotia. However, according to the Labour Standards Code, employers cannot employ a child under the age of 16 in certain types of work, such as:

  • mining
  • manufacturing
  • construction
  • forestry
  • garages and automobile service stations
  • hotels
  • billiard rooms
  • pool rooms
  • bowling alleys
  • theatres

Children Working in Restaurants

Children of 14 and 15 can work in a restaurant, however, the employer must make sure that they are:

  • not operating cooking equipment
  • provided with safety training on all equipment and
  • given adequate supervision


As usual, every rule has an exception. Because of that, in certain conditions, children of less than 16 Yeats but more than 14 can be employed. Therefore, these children are allowed to work for the members of their families.  

Nova Scotia Minimum Age History

The statistic below shows the history of Nova Scotia minimum wage from 2001 to 2020. It includes salaried as well as hourly employees.  

Average weekly earnings of employees in Nova Scotia from 2001 to 2020 (in Canadian dollars)

Year    Salaried employees    Hourly employees

2020    1,243.18                            727.35

2019    1,193.61                            679.78

2018    1,161.87                            649.06

2017    1,153.16                              639.26

2016    1,131.19                              635.08

2015    1,099.3                              622.55

2014    1,081.26                            610.42

2013    1,019.96                              584.44

2012    1,014.17                              584.31

2011    1,008.64                            565.1

2010    1,000.54                              551.95

2009    922.05                               531.8

2008    926.96                                        507.58

2007    909.01.                              485.85

2006    882.32                               480.84

2005    866.72                                        470.66

2004    831.28.                              448.8

2003    800.35                             437.95