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What is California Minimum Wage?

Effective January 1, 2017, the California minimum wage for all industries will be increased yearly until January 1, 2022:

DateMinimum Wage for Employers with 25 Employees or LessMinimum Wage for Employers with 26 Employees or More
January 1, 2017$10.00/hour$10.50/hour
January 1, 2018$10.50/hour$11.00/hour
January 1, 2019$11.00/hour$12.00/hour
January 1, 2020$12.00/hour$13.00/hour
January 1, 2021$13.00/hour$14.00/hour
January 1, 2022$14.00/hour$15.00/hour
January 1, 2023$15.50/hour$15.50/hour
January 1, 2024$16.00/hour$16.00/hour

There are some exceptions to California’s minimum wage laws and they may be subject to future changes. The California Labor Commissioner maintains a helpful website answering some of the most frequently asked questions regarding California’s minimum wage.

Important Note: California’s minimum wage is mandatory, meaning that it cannot be waived by agreement or offset by an employee’s tips.

Important Note: California’s minimum wage is higher than the federal minimum wage. Nevertheless, California employers are subject to both California and federal minimum wage laws.

Important Note: California wage laws only apply to “employees” – not “independent contractors.” However, employers may misclassify employees as independent contractors to avoid complying with California’s wage laws. To learn more about the difference between employees and independent contractors, please click here.

Are there any county or city-specific minimum wages in California?

Yes, there are some counties and cities in California that have a higher minimum wage than established by the state. For example:

  • City of Berkeley: Currently $18.07 per hour.
  • City of Cupertino: Currently $17.75 per hour.
  • City of Emeryville: Currently $18.67 per hour.
  • City of Los Altos: Currently $17.75 per hour.
  • City and County of Los Angeles: Currently $16.78 per hour.
  • City of Malibu: Currently $16.90 per hour.
  • City of Mountain View: Currently $ 18.75 per hour.
  • City of Oakland: Currently $16.50 per hour. Annual increases are based on the Consumer Price Index.
  • City of Palo Alto: Currently $17.80 per hour.
  • City and County of San Francisco: Currently $18.07 per hour.
  • City of San Jose: Currently $ 17.55 per hour.
  • City of San Mateo: Currently $17.35 per hour.
  • City of San Clara: Currently $17.75 per hour.
  • City of Santa Monica: Currently $16.90 per hour.

These local governments may have different minimum wage ordinances for different industries. For more information regarding a specific city’s or county’s minimum wage, please consult that city’s or county’s ordinances. Additionally, UC Berkeley maintains a list of US city and county minimum wage ordinances on its website.

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A Client’s Gratitude

Thank you, Andy Dragovic and Annette DeCoste, for your professionalism and dedication to me and my malpractice claim. Andy’s confident and caring personality assured me that I chose the right firm to help me fight and get through one of the most difficult times of my life.

A Client With a Wrongful Death Case

My family and I would like to thank Matt Turner, Mickey McCullough, Janice Koehler, and your entire law firm for your dedication to my wife’s wrongful death case. We realize that we had the best law firm to successfully help us. We appreciate the obviously hard work and the efforts…

Praise for Albert Asciutto

Shout out to Albert Asciutto for being a fantastic attorney & walking me through the entire process of fighting for my wages! He made the process quick and easy. In the end we won the case!! Thank you again for taking my case on, you are awesome! I would absolutely…

Praise for Jesse Young and Alana Karbal

Alana Karbal and Jesse Young did an excellent job fighting a giant for my wages. They pushed me to get what they needed from me and were amazing at communicating with me at all times. I won my arbitration and was so excited when I got more than what I…

Praise for Wage & Overtime Pay Attorney Jesse Young

Jesse Young worked an employment case for me that ended with almost 700 people getting their unpaid wages back. He and his team are incredible. From the first communication to the last, they never missed a single beat – consistent and clear communication, quickly replying to my communication, and always making…

A Client’s Gratitude for Tad Roumayah

Tad, I want to express my sincere gratitude for your unrelenting advocacy on my behalf throughout this process. It’s a shame that this sort of thing is still happening to new moms in 2023 and at an institution that prides itself on diversity, equity, and inclusion, no less. Knowing there…

Comments about Matthew Curtis from an Appreciative Client

Your efforts have changed my life, Matt. I’m forever grateful. My wife has tons of upcoming medical expenses, and we had both been working hard to make ends meet. I can’t thank you and your staff enough.

Praise for Lisa Esser-Weidenfeller and Matthew Curtis

I am writing to express my sincere gratitude for your hard work and dedication in handling my case. I appreciate your professionalism, your compassion, and your perseverance throughout this challenging process. You have gone above and beyond to protect my rights, to defend my interests, and to secure a favorable…

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