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Owner driver rates and cost schedules

Get a better understanding of your operating costs.

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  • Rates and costs schedules

Owner Drivers and Forestry Contractors Act 2005

The Owner Drivers and Forestry Contractors Act 2005 aims to improve the position of owner drivers and forestry contractors who run small businesses transporting goods or harvesting forestry products.

The Act provides owner drivers and forestry contractors with some protections when they contract out their services. It requires that they are provided with certain information to assist in running a successful business. It also sets out a framework for resolving disputes.

Hirers and freight brokers in the transport and forestry industries have legal obligations under this Act, which was amended on 1 May 2020. It is important that they fully understand these obligations.

Understanding business costs

Our rates and costs schedules set out the typical costs of running an owner driver business based on the type of vehicle a driver operates. They include variable costs such as fuel and tyres, and fixed costs such as registration, finance and insurance.

Owner drivers can use the schedules to get a better understanding of:

  • the factors that affect operating costs
  • the amount they could expect to earn as an employee doing the same kind of work

Rates and cost schedules do not set minimum rates of pay. They aim to help owner drivers and hirers understand the typical operating costs of an owner driver business.  Owner drivers and hirers can use the schedules to assess whether an offer of work will:

  • cover their operating costs
  • provide a good return for the driver's labour
  • provide a good return on the owner driver’s investment

Specific rates and costs schedules are also available for the tip truck sector.

Hirer obligation to provide schedules

Hirers that contract an owner driver for 30 days or more are required to provide the owner driver with the rates and cost schedule that relates to their vehicle.

The relevant schedule must be given:

  • at least three business days before the owner driver is engaged, if the contract will be for a period of at least 30 days; or
  • on the 30th day, if the owner driver is engaged for a total period of at least 30 days in any three-month period.

This obligation does not apply if a hirer engages the owner driver through a freight broker.

From 1 May 2020, hirers may face penalties if they fail to meet these obligations. Learn more about your legal obligations under the Owner Drivers and Forestry Contractors Act 2005.

Rates and costs schedules

1 Tonne Van Courier/Messenger 2018-2019 (DOCX 42.08 KB)DOCX icon1 Tonne Van Courier/Messenger 2018-2019 (PDF 129.2 KB)PDF icon
1 Tonne Vehicle (GVM) General Freight 2018-2019 (DOCX 42.69 KB)DOCX icon1 Tonne Vehicle (GVM) General Freight 2018-2019 (PDF 131.27 KB)PDF icon
4.5 Tonne Rigid Vehicle (GVM) 2018-2019 (DOCX 42.93 KB)DOCX icon4.5 Tonne Rigid Vehicle (GVM) 2018-2019 (PDF 115.58 KB)PDF icon
8 Tonne Rigid Vehicle (GVM) 2018-2019 (DOCX 42.16 KB)DOCX icon8 Tonne Rigid Vehicle (GVM) 2018-2019 (PDF 115.53 KB)PDF icon
12 Tonne Rigid Vehicle (GVM 2-axle) 2018-2019 (DOCX 55.74 KB)DOCX icon12 Tonne Rigid Vehicle (GVM 2-axle) 2018-2019 (PDF 115.66 KB)PDF icon
Semi-Trailer (Bogie Drive 6-axle) 2018-2019 (DOCX 41.6 KB)DOCX iconSemi-Trailer (Bogie Drive 6-axle) 2018-2019 (PDF 115.62 KB)PDF icon
Prime Mover (Bogie Drive) 2018-2019 (DOCX 41.68 KB)DOCX iconPrime Mover (Bogie Drive) 2018-2019 (PDF 115.4 KB)PDF icon

Wage Inspectorate Victoria

Wage Inspectorate Victoria is responsible for monitoring compliance with the Owner Drivers and Forestry Contractors Act 2005.

If you have any questions, Wage Inspectorate Victoria is available to provide information and answer queries. Please call the Information Line on 1800 287 287 or email.