The minimum wage in Michigan is currently $ 9.65 / hour, which is $ 2.40 above the federal rate. That number has grown steadily but recently hit a bump.
Michigans then and now
Michigan was once the home of the American dream and the automobile. Since its glamorous beginnings, the state has overcome many challenges, but the minimum wage is rising again. The state enacted modest annual wage increases in 2014 to bring the standard from $ 7.40 to $ 12.00 by 2030.
It's an ambitious destination for Michigan as the state grapples with one financial crisis after another, the most recent being Covid-19 restrictions that closed stores and kept customers at home. The pandemic left its mark on the country's landscape, but Michigan was planning just such an event.
Future of the Minimum Wage in Michigan
Unemployment skyrocketed last year, with the second quarter of 2020 hitting 20 percent, triggering a "fail-safe" provision. According to the Workforce Opportunity Wage Act of 2018, an unemployment rate of 8.5 percent or more prevents the planned hourly rate increase for the following year. That statutory breaker means the proposed $ 9.87 wage increase for this year won't come until January 2022, provided the economy recovers sufficiently.
Michigan workers – same but different
As in other states, Michigan's minimum wage differentiates between certain types of workers. Those in tipped professions earn $ 3.67, which is 38 percent of the full rate. There are rules on how companies can pay service staff, but the key is that tips and hourly wages must meet the entire minimum wage threshold. That rate will increase as its counterpart increases.
The state also separates workers according to age. Youth workers up to the age of 17 receive only 85 percent of the usual minimum wage. In addition, employees between the ages of 18 and 19 can be classified as “trainees” and receive subordinate remuneration. This grouping of apprentices can mean $ 4.25 an hour for manual workers for the first 90 days.
There are also different remuneration structures for employees with disabilities, trainees and “learners”. When an employer tries to pay someone below the minimum wage, there are usually certain conditions to apply to these rates.
Do you need help with your questions about the minimum wage?
If you're unsure whether your employer is paying you a decent wage, the Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity might be your best place to start. There you can use the appendix to the minimum wage brochure to get a good overview, take a closer look at the laws on the website or fill out a wage and benefit application form.
In addition, Michigan's Helping Hand site has several resources for jobs and education, unemployment, health, family support, and other programs that can help you when you are in a bind. It is designed to break down barriers and connect residents to the services they need without undue complexity.
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Photo by Brett Jordan on Unsplash
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