1. Careers
You can opt-out at any time. Please refer to our privacy policy for contact information.

What is Minimum Wage?


What is minimum wage? Minimum wage is the lowest hourly amount an employer can pay an employee, with some exceptions based on the type of worker. There are both state and federal minimum wage rates, with the current federal minimum wage at $7.25 per hour. Some states have minimum wages that are higher than the federal rate, so workers in those locations are paid the higher amount.

State Minimum Wage

Some states pay a higher minimum wage than the federal minimum. For example, the minimum wage in California is $8.00, $7.67 in Florida, Washington is $9.04, and Vermont is $8.46.

Here's a list of the current minimum wage rates (2014) for each state.

Companies That Don't Have to Pay Minimum Wage

Workers hired for some jobs or assigned certain duties are exempt from minimum wage requirements, which means the company can pay them a lower hourly rate. Here's a list of minimum wage exemptions and information on paying workers submininum wage.

Minimum Wage Laws

If your employer is paying you less than the minimum wage visit the Compliance Section of the US Department of Labor Employment Standards Administration Wage and Hour Division for information on how to proceed.

The private web sites, and the information linked to both on and from this site, are opinion and information. While I have made every effort to link accurate and complete information, I cannot guarantee it is correct. Please seek legal assistance, or assistance from State, Federal, or International governmental resources to make certain your legal interpretation and decisions are correct. This information is not legal advice and is for guidance only.

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.