The Minimum Wage is the minimum compensation an employer is obligated to pay the wage earners for their services performed throughout a specific period. A collective agreement or an individual contract cannot reduce it.
The goal of minimum wages is to safeguard employees from unfairly low pay. They contribute to ensuring that everyone receives a fair and equal share of the benefits of progress and a decent wage for all working people who require such protection. By encouraging the right to equal pay for work of equal worth, minimum wages can also be one component of a policy to combat poverty and lessen inequality, especially between men and women.
In the USA, the minimum wage rate varies from state to state and changes over time. If one thinks of moving to Washington for career purposes and worders about the minimum payouts, continue reading and make informed decisions. So let us begin with the Washington minimum wage!
What is the Minimum Wage in Washington?
Washington DC minimum wage rate for 2023 is $15.74/hour, which is higher than the Federal Minimum Wage of $7.25. A full-time minimum wage employee in Washington will make $117.92 per day, $629.60 per week, and $32,739.20 per year, working 40 hours per week for 52 weeks.
Washington is one of the few states that requires companies to pay all workers at least the state minimum wage, regardless of how much they receive in tips. So, the minimum wage for tipped employees is also $15.74/hour.
The state of Washington does, however, recognize two different districts, i.e., Seattle and SeaTac, with different minimum wage laws:
Seattle's Minimum Wage Structure
Seattle's minimum wage structure is controlled by the Minimum Wage Ordinance, enacted on April 1, 2015.
The conditions are as follows:
- $17.27 per hour when an employer has more than 500 employees.
- $17.27 per hour when an employer has less than 500 employees and does not provide medical benefits to the employees.
- $15.75 per hour when an employer has less than 500 employees and the employees receive tips or healthcare benefits from the employer.
SeaTac's Minimum Wage Structure
The Minimum Wage rate in SeaTac is $17.53 per hour and applies only to Hospitality and Transportation Industry workers. This wage is adjusted for inflation on January 1 every year.
Washington Overtime Wage
Employees who work more than 40 hours in a workweek must be compensated at a time and a half their regular pay rate.
Comp time is legal in Washington. However, it is not considered when considering whether or not an employee is eligible for overtime.
Workers in occupations where federal law establishes overtime pay rates based on factors other than 40 hours per week are not subject to Washington state's overtime requirements. Additionally, there are exceptions for some airlines, ships, and cars on the road. Most of the time, more stringent federal regulations already cover them.
Who is Exempt from Receiving Minimum Wage?
Like other states of the USA, Washington DC also has exceptions to the minimum wage covered by state and federal laws.
Employees or Individuals who are exceptions to the minimum wage are as follows:
- Salaried Learned and creative professionals who earn not less than $684 per week
- Salaried Executive workers who earn not less than $684 per week
- Salaried Administrative workers who make not less than $684 per week
- Computer employees who earn $684 per week or at least $27.63 per hour
- Outside sales employees who do not have a minimum salary requirement
- Highly compensated employees who earn at least $107,432 yearly,
- Tipped employees
- Learners and apprentices
- Employees and workers with disabilities
- Agricultural workers
TheFederal Fair Labor Standards Act specifies special minimum wage rates that apply to particular types of workers and any minimum wage exemptions mentioned above.
What is Subminimum Wage?
When an individual under certain conditions is exempted from receiving minimum wage, they are subject to receiving a Subminimum Wage, which is less than the minimum wage.
The following are eligible to receive subminimum wage:
- Under Federal law, employees under 20 years of age or minors are entitled to a youth subminimum wage of $4.25 per hour for the first 90 days of employment.
- Student workers who work part-time or full-time are paid up to $13.38 hourly.
History of Minimum Wage in Washington State
The Hourly Minimum Wage in USD
1. What is the Subminimum Wage for Minors in Washington?
For individuals who are under 18, the subminimum wage is $4.25 for the initial 3 months of employment.