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2019 Minimum Wage Rate Increases: The List Grows

By Jeffrey W. Brecher and Richard I. Greenberg
  • December 6, 2018

While the federal minimum wage has remained stalled at $7.25 an hour since 2009, there has been significant movement at the state level, with some states enacting a minimum wage rate that is now more than double the federal level.

Seattle is currently the leader for 2019, increasing its minimum wage to $16.00 per hour beginning in January for large employers (those with more than 500 employees). New York is close behind, increasing the minimum wage to $15.00 per hour for large employers located in New York City, though the state minimum will be $11.10 in 2019.

Many minimum wage increases scheduled for next year stem from statutes passed in 2016 or earlier that included pre-determined annual “stepped” increases or potential annual increases based on a particular consumer price index (CPI). But several new states that enacted increases this year (i.e., Delaware, Massachusetts, Arkansas, and Missouri) joined the club as a result of successful voter initiatives.

The majority of the upcoming minimum wage increases will go into effect on January 1 of next year (or the day before in New York). Others, including many municipal increases, will take effect on July 1, 2019.

Furthermore, the minimum wage for “tipped” employees, where allowed, is not reflected in this update, nor are the “living wage” ordinances passed by some municipalities and applicable only to that local government’s employees, contractors, program beneficiaries, and the like.

Minimum wage increases effective January 1, 2019 (December 31, 2018, for New York):

Jurisdiction Rate Increase
Alaska    
    Statewide $9.89 $0.05
Arizona    
    Statewide $11.00 $0.50
    Flagstaff $12.00 $1.00
Arkansas    
    Statewide $9.25 $0.75
California*    
    Statewide    
      26+ employees $12.00 $1.00
      ≤25 employees $11.00 $0.50
Delaware    
    Statewide $8.75 $0.50
Florida    
    Statewide $8.46 $0.21
Maine    
    Statewide $11.00 $1.00
Massachusetts    
    Statewide $12.00 $1.00
Minnesota    
    Statewide    
      $500K+ revenue $9.86 $0.21
      <$500K revenue $8.04 $0.17
Missouri    
    Statewide $8.60 $0.75
Montana    
    Statewide $8.50 $0.20
New Jersey    
    Statewide $8.85 $0.25
New Mexico    
    Albuquerque $9.20 $0.25
      If employer pays at least $2,500 annually toward healthcare or childcare $8.20  
    Bernalillo County $9.05 $0.20
    Las Cruces $10.10 $0.65
New York    
    Statewide $11.10 $0.70
  $12.75 (fast food workers) $1.00
    Nassau/Suffolk/Westchester Counties $12.00 $1.00
  $12.75 (fast food workers) $1.00
    NYC (>10 employees) $15.00 $2.00
  $15.00 (fast food workers) $1.25
    NYC (≤10 employees) $13.50 $1.50
  $15.00 (fast food workers) $1.50
Ohio    
    Statewide $8.55 $0.25
  $7.25 (gross sales <$314K)  
Rhode Island    
    Statewide (most employees) $10.50 $0.40
South Dakota    
    Statewide $9.10 $0.25
Vermont    
    Statewide $10.78 $0.28
Washington    
    Statewide $12.00 $0.50
    Seattle**    
      500+ employees in U.S. $16.00 $1.00
      <500 employees in U.S. $12.00 $0.50
    SeaTac (hospitality & transportation workers) $16.09 $0.45
    Tacoma $12.35 $0.35

 

Minimum wage increases effective July 1, 2019 (unless otherwise stated):
[Note: Some jurisdictions base their minimum wage increase, if any, on a year-end consumer price index and, therefore, have not yet determined the 2019 rate(s).]

Jurisdiction Rate Increase
Delaware    
    Statewide (Oct. 1) $9.25 $0.50
District of Columbia    
    District-wide $14.00 $0.75
Illinois    
    Chicago $13.00 $1.00
Maryland    
    Montgomery County $13.00 (51+ employees) $0.75
  $12.50 (11-50 employees) $0.50
  $12.50 (≤10 employees) $0.50
Minnesota    
    Minneapolis $12.25 (101+ employees) $1.00
  $11.00 (≤100 employees) $0.75
Oregon    
    “Non-Urban” Counties $11.00 $0.50
    Portland Metro $12.50 $0.50
    All Other Counties $11.25 $0.50

 

*California has approximately 20 different city, county, or other local hourly minimum wage rates, many of which are now at $15.00 or more. For further information, please consult the Jackson Lewis workthruIT® app or any Jackson Lewis attorney.

**For “Schedule 2” employers (<500 employees) in Seattle, the minimum hourly wage will be $12.00, but the minimum hourly compensation will be $15.00. The additional $3.00 may be based on wages, tips, bonuses, commissions, or medical benefits contributions.

Jackson Lewis is available to assist employers in achieving compliance with these and other workplace requirements.

©2018 Jackson Lewis P.C. This material is provided for informational purposes only. It is not intended to constitute legal advice nor does it create a client-lawyer relationship between Jackson Lewis and any recipient. Recipients should consult with counsel before taking any actions based on the information contained within this material. This material may be considered attorney advertising in some jurisdictions. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome.

Reproduction of this material in whole or in part is prohibited without the express prior written consent of Jackson Lewis P.C., a law firm with more than 900 attorneys in major cities nationwide serving clients across a wide range of practices and industries. Having built its reputation on providing premier workplace law representation to management, the firm has grown to include leading practices in the areas of government relations, healthcare and sports law. For more information, visit www.jacksonlewis.com.

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