Increase of Minimum Wage

The U.S. Department of Labor reminds employers and employees that the federal minimum wage will increase to $5.85 on July 24.

With this change, workers covered by the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) will be entitled to be paid no less than $5.85 per hour.

The law also requires that workers be paid on their regular paydays for all hours worked during a pay period.

The Fair Minimum Wage Act of 2007 amended the FLSA to increase the federal minimum wage in three steps: to $5.85 per hour effective July 24, 2007; to $6.55 per hour effective July 24, 2008; and to $7.25 per hour effective July 24, 2009.

A separate provision of the bill will bring about phased increases to the minimum wage in the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI) and American Samoa, with the goal of bringing the minimum wage in those locations up to the general federal minimum wage over a number of years.

The department’s Wage and Hour Division, which enforces the FLSA, has posted updated compliance assistance information on its Web site at A revised minimum wage poster, reflecting the increases, is available for viewing, free downloading and posting.

Alternatively, the public may order the poster through the publications order form available at the bottom of the site’s home page. Every employer subject to the FLSA minimum wage provisions must post, and keep posted, a notice explaining the FLSA’s provisions in all of its establishments so that employees are readily able to read it.

A revised FLSA Handy Reference Guide is also available electronically on the agency’s Web site. This document provides guidance on related FLSA provisions, such as the payment of less than the full minimum wage to certain workers with disabilities, full-time students, and student learners who are employed under a special certificate.

Additionally, the guide provides information on provisions relating to the payment of wages to tipped employees and workers under the age of 20.

Employers and employees seeking more compliance information on the new federal minimum wage rate may call the Wage and Hour Division’s toll-free number at (866) 4US-WAGE (487-9243). Fact sheets, minimum wage posters for the CNMI and American Samoa, and further guidance are available on the division’s Web site.

Many states have minimum wage laws with provisions that differ from the federal law. When an employer is subject to both the federal and state wage laws, the employer must comply with the provisions of each law.

With changes in state regulation an inevitable part of the future, you may wish to consider investing in a time and attendance system, which automates the process of recording and paying wages to your employees.

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