Employers get ready! Minimum wage increases will affect numerous states across the country in January 2014.
Under theFair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), the current federal minimum wage is $7.25 per hour. But the FLSA does not supersede any state or local laws that are more favorable to employees. Therefore, if a state has a minimum wage that is higher than the federal minimum, employers subject to the state minimum wage law are obligated to pay the higher rate to employees working in that state.
The map below shows the states that are increasing their minimum wages, including the new rate and amount of the increase. We also provide a listing of the states increasing their minimum wages and the effective dates of the changes below the map.
Updated 12/12/2013 with Colorado minimum wage.
State minimum wage changes effective December 31, 2013
New York: $8.00 per hour. The state minimum wage will also increase to $8.75 per hour effective December 31, 2014, and $9.00 effective December 31, 2015.
State minimum wage changes effective January 1, 2014
Arizona: $7.90 per hour.
Colorado: $8.00 per hour.
Connecticut: $8.70 per hour. The minimum wage is also scheduled to increase to $9.00 per hour on January 1, 2015.
Florida: $7.93 per hour.
Missouri: $7.50 per hour.
Montana: $7.90 per hour.
New Jersey: $8.25 per hour.
Ohio: $7.95 per hour for businesses with annual gross receipts in excess of $292,000 per year.
Oregon: $9.10 per hour.
Rhode Island: $8.00 per hour.
Vermont: $8.73 per hour.
Washington: $9.32 per hour.
State minimum wage changes effective July 1, 2014
California: $9.00 per hour. The state minimum wage will increase again to $10 per hour effective January 1, 2016.
Minimum wage woes
The federal FLSA requires that a minimum wage be paid for all hours an employee is "suffered or permitted" to work and that an overtime wage be paid for all hours "worked" over 40 in a week. The FLSA does not specifically define "hours worked" or place a limit on the number of hours an employee may work; it requires only that overtime be paid for any hours worked over 40.
Generally speaking, work time includes all time that employees spend engaged in the principal activities that they are employed to perform. Hours worked also includes waiting time, travel time, other than time spent commuting to and from the employee’s regular place of work; breaks or meal periods that are less than 20 minutes long; and time the employee is required to spend in training, at seminars, or in meetings.
Hours worked for purposes of the FLSA time spent on call, time spent waiting to work, or time when an employee is required to carry a pager or cell phone, provided the employee is otherwise free to effectively use the time for his or her own personal purposes. The FLSA does not obligate employers to pay employees for holidays, vacation, or sick days.
Under the de minimis rule, employers may disregard insubstantial or insignificant periods of time beyond the scheduled working hours, if, as a practical administrative matter, such time cannot be precisely recorded. If employees are checking e-mails for 2 or 3 minutes, employers will likely not have to pay for this time. But if employees are spending 10 to 15 minutes after work hours, employers will have to pay employees for this work time.
The rules are strict, but the penalties are stricter. Paying employees properly now will help you to avoid fines, claims, and lawsuits down the line.
Minimum Wage and Hours of Work resources
Susan E. Prince, J.D., is a Legal Editor for BLR’s human resources and employment law publications. Ms. Prince has over 10 years of experience as an attorney and writer in the field of human resources and has published numerous articles on a variety of human resources and employment topics, including compensation, benefits, workers’ compensation, discrimination, work/life issues, termination, and military leave. Ms. Prince also served as an expert on several audio conferences discussing the 2004 changes to the federal regulations under the Fair Labor Standards Act. Before starting her career in publishing, Ms. Prince practiced law for several years in the insurance industry and served as president of a retail sales business. Ms. Prince received her law degree from Vermont Law School.
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