The federal minimum wage went unchanged for almost 10 years. That ended July 24, 2007 when the rate jumped 70 cents to $5.85 per hour. But that's just the first of three scheduled increases. Additional rate increases on the way are:
* In July 2008 the rate goes to $6.55
* In July 2009 to $7.25.
That's a combined 40 percent catch-up increase in the FEDERAL floor wage spread over three years. But many states have already set higher minimum wage levels, so the impact of changes to federal minimums depends on what state you do business in. In most states, this year's federal increase won't produce a change. But be aware that states often raise their minimums to reflect federal changes, so state levels may soon shift as well.
Check the latest on minimum wage laws in your stateState laws are seldom simple, but generally, businesses in 19 states were facing minimum wage increases with the first round of federal changes on July 24.
color-coded online map showing states with higher, lower and the same as the federal standard, as well as those with no minimum.
Download and display the new minimum wage posterPosters are available free from the U.S. Dept. of Labor, or for purchase from numerous private legal compliance firms.
view and download a free poster at the DOL website. Posters are in PDF format, in large or small size, and your choice of color or black-and-white.
Answer all your minimum wage questionsHow does the federal minimum apply to workers who receive tips? What about young or full-time student workers?
minimum wage FAQ section that will answer these and other common questions about minimum wage laws. You can also find a selection of helpful and free compliance assistance materials and information at the DOL site.
Know what workers are covered and which are exemptCertain types of employees are exempt from FLSA rules, including minimum wage and overtime.
FairPay Fact Sheet at the DOL Wage and Hour division site for details on exemptions.
- The Full-time Student Program is for full-time students employed in retail or service stores, agriculture, or colleges and universities. Employers obtaining special certificates from the DOL allowing payment at 85% of the minimum wage.
- Some states have minimum wage laws specific to tipped employees. Employees subject to both federal and state wage laws are entitled to the provisions of each law that provide the greater benefits.