While the New Year may mean various changes for workers in California, it has also brought them at least one boon – a higher minimum wage of $10/hour that went into effect as of Jan. 1, 2016.
Below are some more important facts to understand about the new California minimum wage, as well as some related potential changes that may come into play in the near future.
Facts about the California Minimum Wage
- The new California minimum wage is about 38 percent higher than the federal minimum wage, which has remained at $7.25 since 2009 – When there are discrepancies between the state and federal minimum wages, employers are required to pay the higher of the two wages, which would be the California minimum wage for workers in the state.
- Workers in certain areas of California will be eligible for even higher minimum wages – This is because certain regions of the state, including Los Angeles, San Diego and San Francisco counties, have passed regulations for additional minimum wage increases in 2016 and beyond. In fact, in L.A. alone, the minimum wage will increase to $10.50/hour in July 2016, with additional increases approved to bring the minimum wage in the county to $15/hour by 2020.
- California employers cannot get out of paying the new minimum wage via contracts or special agreements with workers – This is a very important fact for workers in California to understand because employers may not always operate above the law, especially if or when they believe workers don’t know or are too afraid to exercise their rights. So, if you have signed any agreements with an employer that forfeit your rights to minimum wage, you should be aware that such agreements are likely illegal – and that they do NOT necessarily eliminate your right to receive minimum wages.
- California voters will get the chance to decide on future hikes to the state minimum wage this November – That’s because, this year, there will be an initiative on the California ballot to increase the state minimum wage to $15/hour over the next four to five years (similar to the incremental increases that have already been approved in Los Angeles).
Contact a Los Angeles Employment Attorney at Urbanic & Associates
Has your employer violated your rights to minimum wages? Or has your employer committed wage theft against you by failing to pay you overtime – or any other compensation you have earned? If so, you can turn to Los Angeles employment attorney at Urbanic & Associates for help defending your rights and pursuing justice.
To discuss your options with Attorney James Urbanic, call him at (310) 216-0900 or send hime an email using the contact form on this page.
From our offices based in Los Angeles, Attorney James Urbanic provides superior representation to clients throughout Los Angeles County and southern California, including (but not limited to) those in Glendale, Burbank, Alhambra, Van Nuys, Santa Monica and Orange County.