Minimum Wage

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 $13 per hour, and an employee in Florida would be entitled to $12.00 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.

Call us at (800) 483-0998 to learn more about what our minimum wage attorneys can do for you.

Choose Your State for Minimum Wages

Which State Has the Highest Minimum Wage?

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.

Is There A Separate Minimum Wage For Tipped Employees?

Yes, there is a separate minimum wage for tipped employees. The federal minimum wage for tipped workers is lower than the standard minimum wage. Under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), employers can pay tipped employees a "tipped minimum wage," which is currently set at $2.13 per hour -- some cities have eliminated this or have updated it since this update. Tipped minimum wages are subject to several conditions.

To ensure that a tipped employee's total earnings, including tips, meet or exceed the standard federal minimum wage, employers are required to make up the difference if the employee's tips do not reach the standard minimum wage level. If tips combined with the tipped minimum wage do not meet the regular minimum wage, the employer must increase the wage to ensure compliance.

It's important to note that some states have their own minimum wage laws and may set different minimums for tipped employees, which could be higher than the federal rate. Employers must adhere to the higher of the federal or state minimum wage, providing greater protection for workers.

If you have questions about your wages, speak with a qualified Illinois minimum wage attorney at USA Employment Lawyers.

Are There Exemptions From Federal Minimum Wage?

While the FLSA sets a standard federal minimum wage, there are certain categories of workers who may be exempt from these requirements.

One significant exemption includes "exempt" employees, who are typically classified as salaried, professional, executive, or administrative employees. These individuals are not entitled to receive minimum wage and overtime pay under the FLSA due to the nature of their job responsibilities.

Additionally, some seasonal and agricultural workers may have different minimum wage requirements, often governed by state or federal agricultural laws. Workers with disabilities may also be subject to special wage provisions under Section 14(c) of the FLSA, allowing employers to pay subminimum wages based on productivity.

The FLSA provides a few other specific exemptions for certain industries or types of work, such as live-in domestic service workers, full-time students working in retail or service, and certain young workers, particularly those in specific youth employment programs. It's crucial for employers and employees to understand these exemptions and how they apply to specific job roles and industries. State laws can further affect minimum wage exemptions, which may differ from federal standards.

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.

For personalized representation and the results you need, please call us at (800) 483-0998 or contact us online

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