National Consumers League

Worker Rights

Worker Rights

Wage Theft: Minimum wage

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Working at a job that pays an hourly rate? Make sure you are earning at least the minimum required by law.

Federal Minimum Wage

According to the Fair Labor Standards Act, (FLSA) the federal minimum wage for covered nonexempt workers stands at $7.25 an hour.

Various minimum wage exceptions apply under specific circumstances to workers with disabilities, full-time students, youth under age 20 in their first 90 consecutive calendar days of employment, tipped employees and student-learners.

State Minimum Wage vs. Federal Minimum Wage

The minimum wage varies state government by state government and the federal government also plays a part.  Many states have minimum wages that are higher than the federal minimum wage while some states have lower minimum wages.

Where an employee is subject to both the state and federal minimum wage laws, the employee is entitled to the higher minimum wage rate.

To view a U.S map that lists the minimum wage requirements by state, please click here.

State Minimum Wage Table (Effective Date: 01/04/2012)*

Higher than Federal Min. Wage

Equals Federal Min. Wage of $7.25

Lower than Federal Min. Wage

No Min. Wage Required

AK - 7.75

DE

AR - 6.25

AL

AZ - 7.65

HI

GA - 5.15

LA

CA - 8.00

IA

MN - 6.15

MS

CO - 7.64

ID

WY - 5.15

SC

CT - 8.25

IN

 

TN

DC - 8.25

KS

4 States

 

FL - 7.67

KY

 

5 States

IL - 8.25

MD

 

 

MA - 8.00

MO

 

 

ME - 7.50

NE

 

 

MI - 7.40

NH

 

 

MT - 7.65

NJ

 

 

NV - 8.25

NY

 

 

NM - 7.50

NC

 

 

OH - 7.70

ND

 

 

OR - 8.80

OK

 

 

RI - 7.40

PA

 

 

VT - 8.46

SD

 

 

WA - 9.04

TX

 

 

 

UT

 

 

18 States + DC

VA

 

 

 

WV

 

 

 

WI

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

23 States

 

 

*Source – U.S. Department of Labor, www.dol.gov/whd/minwage/america.htm

Minimum Wage for Tipped Workers

The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) sets a federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour effective July 24, 2009 for covered, nonexempt employees.  An employer of a tipped employee is only required to pay $2.13 an hour in direct wages if that amount plus the tips received equals at least the federal minimum wage, the employee retains all tips and the employee customarily and regularly receives more than $30 a month in tips. If an employee's tips combined with the employer's direct wages of at least $2.13 an hour do not equal the federal minimum hourly wage, the employer must make up the difference.

Some states have minimum wage laws specific to tipped employees. When an employee is subject to both the federal and state wage laws, the employee is entitled to the provisions which provides the greater benefits.

For more information regarding wage theft and the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) please contact the US Department of Labor Wage and Hour Division at www.wagehour.dol.gov or the US Department of Labor Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) Advisor at www.dol.gov/elaws/flsa.htm and/or call the toll-free information and helpline, available 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. in your time zone, 1-866- 4USWAGE (1-866-487-9243).

Source – U.S. Department of Labor, www.dol.gov/dol/topic/wages/minimumwage.htm

 

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