Minimum Wage Increases in MD and DC

As noted here at the start of this year, some 19 states plus the District of Columbia enacted new minimum wage laws in 2018. These laws supersede the current federal minimum wage rate of $7.25 per hour, and the vast majority of the increases took effect on or about January 1.

The exceptions were Maryland, Oregon and Washington, D.C., which held off enactment until July 1, 2018. Those minimum wage increases are now the law of the land for Maryland and DC employers, so let’s take a closer look:

The minimum wage for hourly employees in Maryland increased to $10.10 on July 1. For tipped employees such as restaurant servers who earn more than $30 monthly in gratuities, the new rate is $3.63.

One notable exception to the new Maryland rate is Montgomery County, where as of July 1 the minimum wage is $12.25 for employers with 51 or more employees and $12.00 for employers with 50 or fewer employees.

There are some other exceptions in the Maryland law, where amusement and recreational establishments must pay employees 85% of the State Minimum Wage Rate. That same 85% of the minimum rate also applies to employees under 20 years of age for their first six months of employment.

The law extends to overtime in Maryland as well, dictating 1.5 times the normal hourly rate for all work beyond 40 hours per week. There are exceptions here as well, with agricultural overtime taking effect after 60 hours per week, and employees of institutions (other than hospitals) providing on-premises care for the sick, aged or individuals with disabilities qualifying for overtime after 48 hours per week.

There are further exemptions to the new overtime rate for agricultural employees, commissioned personnel, those under 16 and working fewer than 20 hours per week, and others.

In the District of Columbia, the new minimum hourly wage is $13.25, and for tipped employees it’s $3.89.

Questions about wage laws? Contact the benefits experts at Consolidated Insurance.