What Is the Minimum Wage in Washington, DC?
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.
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2020 Minimum Wage in DC: $14.00 per hour
Starting July 1, 2019, the Washington DC minimum wage was raised to $14.00 per hour and starting July 1, 2020, the wage will officially be $15. The Fair Shot Minimum Wage Amendment Act of 2016 raises the minimum wage progressively each year according to the Consumer Price Index (CPI). This particular state’s minimum wage is much higher than the federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour.
Tipped: $4.45 per hour
People in regularly tipped professions can make as little as $4.45 per hour in DC. 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 makes $11 per hour after counting her tips. That is $3 less than the current minimum wage in DC, so her employer would be responsible for paying her the remaining $3.
Employees who earn the minimum wage in Washington, DC and work a full-time, 40-hour workweek will earn $560 per week. This is calculated by multiplying the standard minimum wage ($14) by 40 hours (a standard amount of hours in the workweek). If you are on salary instead, make sure that you are at least making this amount per week.
Employees who earn the minimum wage in Washington, DC and work full time could earn $29,120 in a year. If you take the minimum weekly wage, $560, 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: $21.00 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 the minimum of $14 per hour, your overtime rate would be $21.
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, such as work-study at a university, can pay a student $11.90 for up to 20 hours of work.
Washington, DC Minimum Wage Increase News
The capital has passed some progressive wage legislation in recent years, and the following are the most impactful changes.
Fair Shot Minimum Wage Amendment Act of 2016
Mayor Muriel Bowser passed the Fair Shot Minimum Wage Amendment Act in 2016. It set a schedule for minimum wage increases every year on July 1. After the act has reached its cap on July 1, 2020, the minimum wage will begin to increase yearly, based on the CPI.
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This post was updated February 11, 2020. It was originally published April 3, 2019.