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Minimum Wage Update

December 20, 2018

By Jason W. Douthit

Washington: Effective January 1, 2019, the minimum wage rate in Washington will increase to $12.00 per hour.  Employers can pay workers under 16 years old 85 percent of the minimum wage ($10.20 per hour in 2019).

The Washington State Department of Labor & Industries (L&I) enforces Washington’s wage-and-hour laws, which includes the minimum wage. Complete information about Washington state’s minimum wage is available on the L&I website, including details about handling overtime, rest breaks and meals. There is also a minimum wage announcement online that employers can print and post. Employers and workers may also call 1-866-219-7321 for more information.

Seattle, SeaTac, and Tacoma have their own minimum wage rates. The minimum wage for large Seattle employers (employers with more than 500 employees worldwide) is $16.00 per hour in 2019.  Small Seattle employers (500 or fewer employees worldwide) are subject to an hourly minimum wage of $15.00 (though small Seattle employers may pay an hourly wage of $12.00 if contributing at least $3.00 per hour toward an employee’s medical benefits or reported tips.  SeaTac’s minimum hourly wage for 2019 is $16.09 for hospitality and transportation industry employers (employers not within either industry will be subject to Washington’s $12.00 hourly minimum wage).  Tacoma’s 2019 hourly minimum wage of $12.35 comes in just above Washington state’s hourly minimum wage of $12.00.     

We will continue to monitor wage and hour developments. Please feel free to contact Bullard Law with any questions regarding minimum wages or any other labor, employment and employee benefits issues. 
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