Minimum Wage in the United States
Defend Your Right to State and Federal Minimum Wage With USA Employment Lawyers
The federal minimum wage is $7.25 per hour – with few exceptions. In many places, the state minimum wage is higher than the federal wage, and in some states, it is almost double. If an employee is subject to both state and federal minimum wage laws, they are entitled to the highest wage.
For example, an employee in Illinois would be entitled to the state minimum wage of $11 per hour, and an employee in New York would be entitled to $13.20 per hour.
If your employer fails to adhere to federal or state minimum wage laws, USA Employment Lawyers can help. We utilize an ethical approach to recover back pay and hold employers accountable for breaking the law.
With a minimum wage of $14.49 per hour, Washington currently has the highest minimum wage in the United States. Other states with high minimum wages include Massachusetts, California, and New York.
In states where the minimum wage is higher than the federal minimum wage, the state minimum wage applies.
Which State Has the Lowest Minimum Wage?
Georgia and Wyoming have the lowest minimum wages in the United States - $5.15 per hour. Because this amount is lower than the federal minimum wage, the federal rate of $7.25 per hour is observed.
If your employer tries to pay you less than $7.25 per hour, and you are a covered, non-exempt employee, discuss your case with USA Employment Lawyers.
Who Is Covered by Minimum Wage Laws?
All workers covered by the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) are entitled to the federal minimum wage. Workers who receive tips may be paid differently, young workers may occasionally be paid below the federal minimum wage, and full-time students may engage in special “work-study” programs or unpaid internships.
Some smaller employers may also be exempt from the FLSA, but employers are always responsible for proving their exemptions.
Your lawyer can help you determine whether or not you are being paid correctly.
Who Enforces Minimum Wage Laws?
The Wage and Hour Division of the U.S. Department of Labor is responsible for enforcing the minimum wage. Attorneys can also help employees bring private enforcement actions against their employers.
Each state has agencies to enforce its relevant employment laws, as well.
What about Overtime?
Under the FLSA, workers who earn minimum wage are usually entitled to overtime, too. Overtime pay applies when you work more than 40 hours in a workweek. For each hour worked over 40, you should get at least one and one-half times your regular rate of pay.
If you are not earning the correct overtime, your employer is violating the law.
How Can an Attorney Help?
There are many remedies for wage and hour violations. The most common one is “back pay,” in which your employer pays you the money it owes. Back pay or back wages sometimes come with interests, and employers can be penalized for failing to pay their employees appropriately.
If you sue your employer for back wages, and you win, your employer may also be responsible for your legal fees. In some cases, you can collect other damages, as well.
Find out how much your case could be worth by telling a minimum wage attorney about your situation. USA Employment Lawyers offers free, confidential case evaluations to help you explore your rights and legal options, and we are dedicated to making a difference for our clients.