What Is the Minimum Wage in Washington, DC?

Madison Baker  | 

As our nation’s capital, Washington, DC sets the stage for the rest of the country. There’s been a lot of talk about raising the minimum wage across the United States, and some people are looking to DC for guidance.

2019 Minimum Wage in DC: $13.25 per hour

Starting July 1, 2018, the minimum wage was raised from $12.50 to $13.25 per hour. This is much higher than the federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour.

Tipped: $3.89 per hour

People in regularly tipped professions can make as little as $3.89 per hour. This is under the assumption that employees will make up the difference in tips. However, if employees do not make at least the minimum wage when accounting for tips, then the employer is responsible for making up the difference.

Let’s assume a waitress only make $11 per hour after counting her tips. That is $2.25 less than the current minimum wage in DC, so her employer would be responsible for paying her the remaining wage.

Weekly: $530 per 40-hour work week

This is calculated by multiplying the standard minimum wage ($13.25) by 40, a standard amount of hours in the work week. If you are on salary instead, make sure that you are at least making this amount per work.

Annually: $27,560

If you take the minimum weekly wage, $530, and multiply it by 52, the number of weeks in a year, you’ll get the minimum yearly wage. Keep in mind that employers are only legally obligated to pay by the hour.

Additionally, keep in mind that this is not the amount you will ultimately take home. This is the minimum annual wage before taxes and other paycheck deductions.

Overtime: $19.88 per hour

Employees that work more than 40 hours a week are entitled to 1.5 times their regular rate. So your overtime rate is dependent upon your personal wage. If your employer pays you $20 per hour, your overtime rate would be $30.

Minimum Wage Exemptions

There are some exemptions to the minimum wage law in DC.

  • Under 20: If you are under 20 years of age, your employer can pay you $4.25 per hour for the first 90 days of employment.
  • Student Exemptions: Certain programs, like work-study at a university, can pay a student $11.90 for up to 20 hours of work.

Washington, DC Minimum Wage Increases News

The capital has passed some progressive wage legislation in recent years, and the following are the most impactful.

D.C. Minimum Wage Amendment Act of 2013

This act raised the minimum wage to $11.50 per hour and mandated that the minimum wage raise accordingly with the Consumer Price Index every year thereafter. Ultimately, though, it has been overtaken by later legislation.

Fair Shot Minimum Wage Amendment Act of 2016

Mayor Muriel Bowser passed this act in 2016. It set a schedule for minimum wage increases every year on July 1st. The goal is to get the minimum wage to $15 per hour on July 1, 2020.


Image Source: https://depositphotos.com/

This post was updated April 3, 2019. It was originally published April 3, 2019.