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West Coast Employment Lawyers is open 24/7 and fully operational during the COVID-19 quarantine. We are available to serve all of our personal injury clients, as well as potential new clients. Please feel free to contact us anytime.

Top Ranked

Employment Law Firm in California

Top Ranked

Employment Law Firm in California

California Minimum Wage


Minimum wage in the state of California is $12.00 per hour, which is more than the Federal Minimum Wage of $7.25. As an employee in the state of California, that means you are entitled to be paid the higher state minimum wage. The $12.00 per hour minimum wage will apply to most employees in the state of California. There may be limited exceptions, such as for tipped employees, student workers, and other exempt occupations.

The minimum wage in California was most recently changed in 2008 and was raised from $8.00 to $12.00. California’s minimum wage rate is reflective of a Consumer Price Index, which is intended to increase the pay rate in accordance with inflation. As such, the current minimum wage rate in the state of California is re-evaluated every year based on this criteria.

The $12.00 per hour minimum wage will be effective from January 2018 and onward for all employers in California that have 26 or more employees. Any employers with 25 or less employees will have a minimum wage of $11.00 per hour. California Division of Labor Standards Enforcement

As of Jan. 1, 2019, the minimum wage in California will increase from $11 to $12 per hour for all employers with 25 or more employees. The minimum salary requirement for any exempt employees will also be affected, as it will increase to $49,920.

Workday Explained

Minimum Wage Throughout California

Minimum Wage Exemptions

Workday Explained

A typical workday is eight hours. Any work that is done in excess of eight hours in a single workday, which is in excess of 40 hours in one workweek, or during the first eight hours worked on the seventh day of work in any single workweek, must be paid at the rate of one and one-half times the normal rate. 

Further, all work completed in excess of 12 hours in one workday or in excess of eight hours on the seventh day of any workweek must be paid no less than twice the regular rate. (California Labor Code section 510) 

Minimum Wage Throughout California

As of January 2019: 

Belmont — $13.50 

Redwood City — 26 or more employees: $13.50; 25 or less employees: $13.50 

Richmond — without any benefits: $15.00; with benefits: $13.50 

San Diego — $12.00 

Below is a list of present rates and any future increases:

    • Berkeley: $12.53
    • Emeryville: $16.00 
  • Los Angeles (city and county): 26 or more employees: $14.25 (7-1-19) and $15.00 (on 7-1-20). 25 or fewer employees: $13.25 (7-1-19), $14.25 (7-1-20) and $15.00 (7-1- 21).
  • Mountain View: $15.65
  • Oakland: $13.80 and adjusted annually for inflation.
  • Palo Alto: $13.50 and adjusted annually for inflation.
  • San Francisco: $15.00 and adjusted annually for inflation.
  • San Jose: $15.00 with annual cost of living increases.

Minimum Wage Exemptions

Minimum wage in the state of California will not apply to outside salespersons or any employees who are in the immediate family of his or her employer. A student worker can also be paid as little as 85% of the minimum wage for his or her first 160 hours of work. Further, minimum wage exemptions may exist for a disabled employee or a nonprofit employee once the employer has obtained the appropriate certificate from the California Division of Labor Standards Enforcement.

Finally, an employer in the state of California cannot pay you less than $12.00 per hour unless you or your occupation are exempt from the minimum wage under state or federal law.

Please note that all California employers are required to display a California minimum wage poster in a visible place so that employees know about the minimum wage and their rights under California labor law.

What Can West Coast Employment Lawyers Do For You?

If you have made up your mind to take action, it is important to work with an attorney that specializes in cases like yours. The employment lawyers at West Coast Employment Lawyers have extensive experience handling wage and hour cases. We will work tirelessly to gather the facts, find and interview eyewitnesses, hire experts, and fight for your rights.

We work on a contingency basis, which means we only get attorney’s fees if we are able to recover for you. Our legal team is available 24/7 and will take care of your case from start to finish. For a free no-obligation consultation with an employment attorney in California, contact our office at 1-800-247-9235.


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