By now, most of us have heard about the drive to raise the nationwide minimum wage to $15 per hour. In July, the House of Representatives passed Raise the Wage Act, which would increase the federal minimum wage from $7.25, the rate where it has been set since 2009. The bill is now in the Senate. While some states may set a higher minimum wage, above $15 per hour.
One of the more overlooked aspects of Raise the Wage is the effect it would have on tipped employees. Currently, federal law allows employers to pay tipped employees $2.13 per hour as long as their effective hourly rate, with tips, totals more than the $7.25 per hour federally mandated minimum wage. Raise the Wage would abolish the sub-minimum wage of $2.13 per hour allowed for tipped employees. Tipped workers still would be allowed to receive gratuities; employers simply would be required to the same minimum wage to tipped employees as they do to non-tipped employees. Seven states — Alaska, California, Minnesota, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, and Washington — eliminated the two-tier system entirely decades ago or never allowed the practice. If you work in one of these states – or if you work in any state if Congress passes Raise the Wage and it is signed into law – you are entitled to the federally mandated minimum wage of $7.25 and tips and time-and-a-half wages for your hours worked over 40 in a workweek.
If you, a friend, relative or neighbor is a tipped employee and have questions about whether you are being properly paid, please contact SLG the Shavitz Law Group at (561) 447-8888 or email us at [email protected] to learn about your rights.