Effective September 30, 2023, the Florida minimum wage is $12.00 per hour, with a minimum wage of at least $8.98 per hour for tipped employees, in addition to tips, through September 29, 2024.
On November 3, 2020, Florida voters approved a state constitutional amendment to gradually increase the state’s minimum wage each year until reaching $15.00 per hour on September 30, 2026. On September 30, 2023, Florida’s minimum wage will increase to $12.00 per hour. Each year thereafter, Florida’s minimum wage will increase by $1.00 until the minimum wage reaches $15.00 per hour on September 30, 2026. Resuming in 2027, the minimum wage will be adjusted annually for inflation.
An employer may not retaliate against an employee for exercising his or her right to receive the minimum wage. Rights protected by the State of Florida Constitution include the right to:
File a complaint about an employer’s alleged noncompliance with lawful minimum wage requirements.
Inform any person about an employer’s alleged noncompliance with lawful minimum wage requirements.
Inform any person of his or her potential rights under Section 24, Article X of the State Constitution and to assist the individual in asserting such rights.
An employee who has not received the lawful minimum wage after notifying his or her employer and giving the employer 15 days to resolve any claims for unpaid wages may bring a civil action in a court of law against an employer to recover back wages plus damages and attorney’s fees.
An employer found liable for intentionally violating minimum wage requirements is subject to a fine of $1,000 per violation, payable to the State. The Attorney General, or other official designated by the Legislature, may bring a civil action to enforce the minimum wage.
For additional details, see Section 24, Article X of the State of Florida Constitution, and section 448.110, Florida Statutes.
There are also a number of exemptions and special cases where the above Florida minimum wage rates don’t apply. More on this in the next section.
Ultimately, the Florida minimum wage is intended to provide a basic standard of living for workers in the state. It is important to note however that the minimum wage is not a living wage, which is the wage that a worker needs to earn to afford a basic standard of living. The living wage in Florida is $15.76 per hour for a single adult with no children, and $28.88 per hour for a family of two adults and two children.
While the Florida minimum wage is generally set at $12.00 per hour, there are certain exemptions and special cases that apply to specific types of employees or businesses. These exemptions reflect the diverse nature of Florida’s economy and the unique circumstances faced by certain industries or workers.
Small businesses. Businesses with annual sales under $110,000 can pay a minimum wage of $4.00 per hour. This exemption is intended to provide flexibility for small businesses that may operate with limited resources and face challenges in meeting the standard minimum wage.
Agricultural and seasonal workers. Agricultural workers are subject to a minimum wage of $7.25 per hour. This lower rate reflects the unique circumstances of the agricultural industry, which is often characterized by seasonal fluctuations in demand and labor requirements.
State and local government employees. Employees of state and local governments are also exempt from the Florida minimum wage. These workers are subject to their own wage scales, which are typically determined through collective bargaining agreements or other labor relations processes.
Non-profit organizations. If a non-profit organization can demonstrate that it is financially unable to pay the minimum wage, it can receive an exemption from the Florida Department of Labor.
In addition to these general exemptions, there are also special cases that apply to certain types of employees.
Tipped employees. Tipped workers, like waiters and waitresses, receive a base wage of $8.98 per hour, with tips supplementing their earnings. Employers must ensure they earn the minimum wage, including tips, over a workweek.
Student learners. Student learners enrolled in vocational education programs can be paid a minimum wage of $4.25 per hour.
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