The 2023 minimum wage rate in Washington State will increase to $15.74 per hour for employees sixteen years of age and older, the Washington State Department of Labor & Industries announced on September 30, 2022. This increase represents an increase of $1.25 per hour, or an 8.66 percent increase year over year. Employees aged 14 to 15 years old must earn at least $13.38 per hour in 2023.
Given the steep increase in the minimum wage, the state’s salary requirements for exempt employees are also increasing significantly. In 2023, small employers (one to no more than fifty employees) must pay exempt employees 1.75 times the minimum wage, meaning that exempt employees of small employers must earn at least $1,101.80 per week ($57,293.60 per year) to meet the minimum salary requirement to be exempt from overtime requirements.
Large employers (fifty-one or more employees) must pay exempt employees at least two times the minimum wage to meet the minimum salary requirements. In 2023, large employers must pay exempt employees at least $1,259.20 per week ($65,478.40 per year) to meet the state’s minimum salary requirement to be exempt from overtime requirements.
Exempt computer professionals who are paid on an hourly versus salary basis must earn at least $55.09 per hour (3.5 times the minimum wage).
Ogletree Deakins’ Seattle office and will continue to monitor and report on Washington State wage and hour developments and will post updates to the firm’s Washington and Wage and Hour blogs as additional information becomes available. Important information for employers is also available via the firm’s webinar and podcast programs.
Further information on federal, state, and major locality wage and hour laws is available in the firm’s OD Comply: State Wage & Hour subscription materials, which are updated and provided to OD Comply subscribers as the law changes.