The term "minimum wage" refers to the lowest hourly rate that a company can legally pay an employee in exchange for services performed over a period of time. This is the case unless the company or employee is exempt from this amount under state or federal law. If no exemptions are allowed by law, this minimum payment cannot be reduced.
Minimum wage laws exist to ensure that everyone gets a living wage, a fair share of the benefits of growth, and is shielded from exploitation by employers.
The minimum wage in the USA varies from state to state. This article will educate you about everything related to the minimum wage in Massachusetts.
Minimum Wage in Massachusetts
From January 1, 2023, Massachusetts's minimum wage is $15/Hour.
Compared to last year, it has increased by 75 cents from $14.25 to $15, that is, by 5.26%.
Daily/Weekly/Yearly Minimum Wage
A full-time minimum wage employee in Massachusetts in 2023 will make $120.00/day, $600.00/week, and $31,200.00/year, working 8 Hours per day, 40 hours per week for 52 weeks.
The daily, weekly, and monthly figures can vary depending on the number of hours, days, and weeks worked.
Overtime Minimum Wage
In 2023, the minimum overtime pay is $22.5/Hour. Employees who work more than 40 hours per week are entitled to at least 1.5 times the standard applicable minimum wage.
In some states, employees are entitled to this overtime rate if they work more than a specific number of hours per day.
The Massachusetts overtime law totally exempts a number of professions from overtime laws, including janitors who are provided with living quarters, seasonal employees, mariners, salespeople, apprentices and learners, fishermen, farm workers, and nonprofit school staff.
Employees currently exempt from Massachusetts' minimum wage laws are also excluded from overtime compensation, as are those who work in motels, restaurants, summer camps, garages, hospitals, or senior homes.
How is Massachusetts's Minimum Wage Different from the Federal Minimum Wage?
The Federal Minimum Wage is currently $7.25/Hour, and many states have a higher state minimum wage. Massachusetts is one of 29 US states with a higher minimum wage than the federal minimum wage.
Local Minimum Wages
The minimum wage rate laws are the same for all employers and employees all over Massachusetts.
Who Qualifies for Minimum Wage?
Most Massachusetts workers are eligible and qualified to receive the minimum wage, with a few exclusions, including tipped workers, some students, and certain exempt professions.
Who is Exempt from Receiving Minimum Wage?
Certain employees are excluded from the Minimum Wage under Federal and State laws. Employees must fulfill specific conditions to be eligible for the exemption.
The following list of workers in Massachusetts are exempt from both Federal and State minimum wage laws:
- Highly paid workers (those making at least $107,432 annually)
- Executive and administrative staff, as well as academics and creative professionals making at least $684 a week in pay
- External sales personnel (no minimum salary requirement)
- Employees of certain religious, non-profit, or educational institutions
- Employees who work with computers make $684 a week, or they can be paid by the hour as long as the rate is at least $27.63
- Member of a religious order
(a) Employees Under 20 Years of Age
Minimum Wage for Employees Under 20 Years of Age (Minors and Young Workers) - $4.25/Hour
Under Federal law, a new employee (under 20 years of age) is paid a training wage of $4.25/Hour for the first 90 days of employment. The employee payment will rise to the full minimum wage when the first 90 days have passed (or earlier if the employee turns 20 years of age).
(b) Full-Time and Vocational Students
Minimum Wage for Full-Time and Vocational Students - $12.75/Hour
Full-time high school or college students who work part-time may be paid 85% of the state minimum wage (as little as $12.75 per hour) for up to 20 hours of work per week at certain employers including work-study programs at universities.
(c) Tipped Employees
Minimum Wage for Tipped Employees - $6.75/Hour
Employees who earn at least $20 each month are tipped employees in Massachusetts. Examples include service barbers, bartenders, waiters, waitresses, etc.
They are entitled to the “service rate,” which is the Tipped Minimum Wage of $6.15/Hour.
They may be paid less than the minimum wage, but the employer must compensate the difference if a tipped worker doesn't earn the necessary minimum wage/hour of $15, including tips.
Only the employee is entitled to the tips, and the employer has no control over the tips.
(d) Agricultural or Farmworkers
Minimum Wage for Agricultural or Farmworkers - $8.00/Hour
Employees in this sector are entitled to the “agricultural wage” of $8.00/Hour.
Massachusetts Break Laws
Although Massachusetts law requires employers to give their employees breaks and meal periods, federal law does not.
If the workday is more than six hours, the employee must be given a half-hour meal break. Employees must be relieved of all obligations during a meal break and are free to leave the workplace.
If an employee works during their meal break, the employer is required to give them compensation.
According to Massachusetts law, the meal break may also be utilized for other purposes, such as prayer.
Massachusetts Payment Cycles
Every hourly worker must be paid weekly or biweekly (every other week).
As a result, an hourly worker who works five or six days a week must be paid within six days of the end of the pay period. Regardless of whether an employee works one to four or seven days, the employer is required to pay the employee's salary within seven days of the end of the pay period.
Massachusetts Fluctuating Workweek Method (FWW)
In some cases, the FFW method or Fluctuating Workweek enables some eligible salaried individuals to receive overtime pay.
For every hour worked beyond the 40 hours in a workweek quota, they are eligible to receive overtime pay.
On top of this, they are also entitled to receive bonuses, hazard pay, or commissions as per company or state/federal policies.
Those who meet the following criteria are eligible to implement the FWW method:
- They work under a variable workweek condition, meaning their workweek can be more or less than the usual 40 hours per week rule.
- They are fixed-salaried employees meaning they get paid a certain amount of compensation regardless of their workload.
- They earn a minimum wage of $7.25 hourly, i.e., the federal minimum wage.
Let's say your weekly income is $1000 a Week, and, in the subsequent week, you worked 45 hours (Overtime - 5 Hours).
$1000 / 45 = $22.22 per hour
So, the overtime pay per hour will be
$22.22/Hour x 0.5 = $11.11 for each overtime hour worked
Total Overtime Pay of that week will be
$11.11 x 5 Overtime Hours = $55.55
**The FWW rate is fixed at 0.5!
History of Minimum Wage in Massachusetts State
The governor of Massachusetts, Charlie Baker, signed a set of changes in minimum wage and hour laws in 2018. Because the new law mandates incremental increases in the minimum wage for tipped and non-tipped employees and a gradual decrease in the premium pay for some employees working on Sundays, the revisions were called the "grand bargain."
The minimum wage in Massachusetts was at $11 per hour in 2019 and has increased by 75 cents/hour every January since then.
The history of Massachusetts's minimum wage since 2006 is shown in the table below.
Standard Minimum Wage
Tipped Minimum Wage
1. How can I calculate my wage income online?
You can easily calculate your wages and tips earned by using the minimum wage in Massachusettes calculator.
2. How Much Will I Earn Working a Minimum Wage Job in Massachusetts?
An employee in Massachusetts making the minimum wage full-time would earn $114.00 per day, $57.00 per week, and $29,640.00 annually if they worked 40 hours per week across 52 weeks.
3. What Is Massachusetts Minimum Wage for Minors?
For the first 90 days of employment, Massachusetts employers may pay 18-year-olds and minors the $4.25 youth minimum wage.