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04/02/15 - McDonald's is raising the minimum wage and introducing paid time off for 90,000 employees in company-owned stores. The new wage hike of $1 above the local legal minimum wage will go into effect on July 1, 2015. By the end of 2016, the company predicts minimum wage at company-owned restaurants will be at least $10 an hour. Full- and part-time employees at company-owned restaurants, with at least one year of service, will begin to accrue personal paid time-off. For example, an employee who works an average of 20 hours per week will be eligible to accrue approximately 20 hours of paid time off per year.  If these employees don’t take the time off they’ve earned, they will be paid for the value of that time.

Some facts: when federal and state law have different minimum wage rates, the higher standard applies. And tipped workers: your overtime hourly rate can never be less than your minimum wage. Check our minimum wage section.

An increasing number of professionals are interested in opportunities outside the U.S. And it's not the typical globetrotter - young and unattached - looking for work overseas. So don't rule yourself out. Check here your Salary Overseas.


Montgomery County, Maryland: $9.55 by Nov.

Prince George's County, Maryland: $9.55 by Nov.

New York: $9.00, tipped workers: $7.50 by Dec. 31,

NYC: fast food and state workers: $10.50 by Dec. 31

New York: fast food and state workers: $9.75 by Dec. 31

2016 and onwards:

Alaska: $9.75 by Jan 2016

Arkansas: $8.50 by 2017

Berkeley, Ca.: $12.53 by Oct 2016

California $10 by 2016

Chicago, IL: $13.00 by July 2019

Connecticut to $10.10 by 2017

Delaware $8.25 by June 2016

Hawaii to $10.10 by 2018

Los Angeles, Ca to $10.50 by July 2016

Maryland to $10.10 by 2018 

Massachusetts to $11 by 2017

Michigan to $9.25 by 2018  

Minnesota to $9.50 by 2016

Multnomah County, Ore to $15 by 2016

Nebraska to $9.00 by Jan 2016

Rhode Island to $9.60 by Jan 2016

Sacramento to $12.50 by 2020

San Diego (Cal.) to $11.50 by 2017

San Francisco: $15 by 2018

Seattle to $15 by 2017

South Dakota to $8.55 by Jan 2016

Vermont to $10.50 by 2018

West Virginia to $8.75 by 2016

Washington D.C. to $11.50 by 2016

NYC: fast food and state workers: $15 by Dec. 2018 

New York: fast food and state workers: $15 by July 2021

Proposed Big Changes Overtime Pay

07/01/15 - The U.S. Department of Labor released the long awaited proposed overtime rule. If implemented it would provide overtime pay to low paid managers by 2016, who currently don't qualify for them. At the moment, under the federal law, if an employee makes at least $23,660 per year - or $455 per week - their employer doesn't have to pay them overtime. The new policy would raise that bar to $50,440. Currently, only 8% of salaried workers can count on overtime protection. According to the Economic Policy Institute, the proposed threshold will ensure that at least 44% of all workers are automatically covered by the FLSA’s overtime protections.

06/22/15 - Rhode Island's Gov. Raimondo signed Monday legislation into law that will raise Rhode Island’s minimum wage from $9 to $9.60 an hour beginning on Jan. 1. The new rate will match Connecticut and Vermont, where the rate will be $9.60 an hour in 2016. The Massachusetts rate will be $10 an hour. In 2017, however, Connecticut’s rate rises to $10.10 an hour, Vermont’s increases to $10 an hour, and Massachusetts moves to $11 an hour. The Rhode Island legislation does not address 2017.

06/15/2015 - Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti on Saturday signed a bill  to increase the minimum wage in the nation's second-largest city to $15 an hour by 2020 from the current $9. The 67-percent pay increase would be implemented gradually, starting at $10.50 an hour for larger employers in 2016, and gradually going up each year until it reaches $15 in 2020. 

09/02/15 - Washington state’s minimum wage will not increase next year, and the state will no longer have the highest statewide minimum wage as of January. State officials announced that the current minimum wage of $9.47 an hour will not increase because inflation, as measured by the national Consumer Price Index. That index decreased 0.3 percent.

07/23/15 - The “Fight for $15” effort for higher pay for fast-food workers in New York won a major victory on Wednesday. The increase to $15 an hour would be fully phased in by the end of 2018 for workers in New York City and by mid-2021 for those in the rest of the state. Currently, fast-food pay in New York is about $9 an hour.

07/24/15 - Professional cheerleaders are now recognized as employees under California law. On July 15, 2015, California Governor Jerry Brown signed a bill that requires all California-based professional sports teams to pay their cheerleaders the minimum wage, overtime, workers’ compensation, paid sick leave, and other benefits. The law goes into effect on January 1, 2016. An identical bill, referred to as the Cheerleaders’ Fair Pay Act (CFPA), was introduced in the New York State Assembly on June 3, 2015. A trend to introduce similar legislation may emerge in states that currently have pending suits filed by NFL cheerleaders, such as New York, New Jersey, and Ohio.

Maryland Montgomery County Freezes Cash Pay Tipped Workers

07/02/15 - The Montgomery County Council has frozen the minimum wage for tipped workers in the county at $4 per hour, with the goal of keeping costs competitive for restaurant owners. Previously, the maximum tip credit was equal to the county’s minimum wage less 50 percent of the (lower) state minimum wage.

Ikea Raises Minimum Wage 2nd Year in Row

06/24/15 - Ikea's U.S division is raising the minimum wage for the second year in a row. Starting Jan. 1, Ikea's average minimum hourly wage will increase to $11.87, which is $4.62 above the current federal wage and marks a $1.11 increase, or 10 percent, from this year's average minimum pay. The starting wage for any given store in the U.S. reflects the cost of living in that particular area as determined by the MIT Living Wage Calculator, which takes into account the local cost of rent, food, transportation and the like. 

Michigan House Approves Bill Barring City Minimum Wage

06/18/15 - The Republican-led Michigan House on Tuesday approved a bill prohibiting local governments from setting minimum wage laws or benefit requirements. The bill will return to the Senate for approval of minor House modifications, and is expected to pass. Michigan's minimum wage is $8.15 an hour.

Could you Earn more from Walking Dogs?

05/26/15 - Dog walkers could earn more than the highest $15 minimum wage rate while working less. Depending on the state/city they live in, dog walkers charge from $9 to $25 per dog walk. Let's assume they would ask $14 and walk 192 dogs per month, which adds up to annual earnings of roughly $29.000. That is less than the £31,200 a worker would make annually with a $15 hourly minimum wage rate. However, according to research in the UK, taking other people’s pets for a stroll is not a full time job, as most dog walkers take several dogs out at a time and typically take about 13 dogs per day, which means the full month’s work of 192 dogs is completed within 15 days. Adding 5 days more work and 65 dogs to walk extra, the annual earnings of a dog walker would be about $36,000, $4,800 more than a full time annual minimum wage with an hourly rate of $15. Dog walkers in cities as L.A. or Boston charge up to $25 dollars per hour and could earn up to $60,000 a year, That is more than the salary of a full time nurse, bank employee or real estate agent. Check your salary to see if you earn more than a dog walker.