What’s the Law On Minimum Wage?

Many laws throughout the nation, states, and local governments govern minimum wage. However, the main federal law that sets the national standard and rules for wages is the Fair Labor Standards Act.

What’s The Minimum Wage Law?

The Fair Labor Standards Act, starting at 29 U.S.C. sections 201, outlines the rules of minimum wage. The national standard is set at $7.25 per hour. However, FLSA allows for tipped employees to be paid a minimum of $2.13 per hour. At the end of the pay period, the tipped employees must have made at least the standard wage or more. Meanwhile, young workers under the age of 20 have a minimum pay of $4.25 per hour for the first 90 days of work. After 90 days have been completed, the employer must begin paying $7.25 per hour.

To raise the minimum wage, the Congress passes a bill. After the bill is passed, the President of the United States must sign it, moving it into law in order.

Employers must pay employees the highest minimum wage provided by federal, state, or local law. For example, if the local law has a minimum of $10 per hour, employers under the jurisdiction of this local law are obligated to pay employees $10 per hour rather than the federal wage of $7.25.

Who’s Not Eligible for Minimum Wage?

Not every employee is eligible for FLSA standardized wage. In fact, factors such a salary or type of work cause some employees to be exempt. Of course, certain types of positions are not considered actual employee positions at a company, which means these positions are not eligible for minimum wage.

  • Independent contractor (consultant or freelancer)
  • Commissioned sales employees
  • Farm workers
  • Seasonal and recreational workers
  • Executive, administrative, professional workers
  • Casual babysitters
  • Tipped employees
  • Young workers

If you aren’t sure if you are exempt from minimum wage due to your position, research the local law and contact a lawyer to ask your questions.

Who Enforces The Law On Wages?

The Wage and Hour Division (WHD) carries out the rulings of the U.S. Department of Labor through the Fair Labor Standards Act. Naturally, through enforcement and educational materials, the WHD strives to ensure that every eligible employee receives his or her rightful wages according to law and time worked.

What Employers Are Required To Pay Minimum Wage?

The Fair Labor Standards Act obligates businesses that make a gross volume of $500,000 in a year to pay minimum wage. Also, businesses that work with interstate commerce or transportation are required to pay at least the minimum. Moreover, FLSA requires the minimum pay to be given to employees of federal, state, and local government agencies, schools, and hospitals.

If someone tells you that you are not entitled to minimum wage, check the law in your state and contact a lawyer.


If you think your employer has violated the minimum wage law, contact us.

Don’t hesitate, talk to an attorney: (412) 626-5626 or lawyer@lawkm.com.