Frequently Asked Questions About Minimum Wage

What is the minimum wage rate in Missouri?

The current Missouri Minimum Wage rate is $7.50 per hour.

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Can an employer pay an individual under 20 years of age less than the applicable minimum wage rate?

Section 290.517, RSMo and 8 CSR 30-4.060(6) both require a hearing addressing the specific exception requested before a training wage lower than the applicable minimum wage rate may be paid for learners or apprentices. Accordingly, until such time that a hearing may be held and a regulation issued allowing for a reduced wage, covered nonexempt employees need to be paid the applicable minimum wage rate. You can access the minimum wage law and rules at http://www.moga.mo.gov/STATUTES/C290.HTM and http://www.sos.mo.gov/adrules/csr/current/8csr/8c30-4.pdf.

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What amount must an employer pay a tipped employee?

Compensation for a tipped employee must total at least the minimum wage rate which currently is $7.50 per hour. Employers subject to the provisions of the law are required to pay tipped employees at least 50 percent of the minimum wage of $7.50, or $3.75 per hour. Employers of tipped employees must pay more than 50 percent of the minimum wage rate to tipped employees if it is necessary to bring the employee′s total compensation up to at least the minimum wage rate per hour. In other words, the employer is required to make up any difference between the minimum wage amount and the actual base wage and tips received by the employee.

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What amount must an employer pay a tipped employee for hours worked over 40 in a workweek?

"Time and one-half" is the minimum wage ($7.50) plus one-half of the minimum wage ($3.75), resulting in a total overtime wage of at least $11.25 per hour. Section 290.512.1, RSMo, and the state Labor Department's regulation 8 CSR 30-4.020(1) allows an employer to apply a tip credit up to 50 percent ($3.75) of the minimum wage of $7.50 per hour. This tip credit, however, does not increase for overtime hours. The maximum tip credit employers may take on the wage rates they pay tipped employees is still 50 percent of the minimum wage rate ($3.75) for both hours worked up to and over 40 in a workweek. Thus, employers must pay tipped employees at least $11.25 per hour for their overtime hours. But, if the employee does not earn at least $3.75 per hour in tips for the overtime hours, the employer must make up the difference between the actual amount earned per hour by the employee in wages and tips and $11.25.

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Is there any exemption for the small business employer so I will not have to pay the Minimum Wage?

The only exemption that applies is for a retail or service business whose annual gross sales made or business done is less than $500,000.

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Where can I get additional information regarding the law changes?

If you cannot find a particular answer on this Web site, e-mail us your question or call the Division of Labor Standards at 573-751-3403.

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Do employers have to post a Minimum Wage poster in the workplace?

All employers subject to any provisions of the law shall post a summary of the law and regulations. The Division of Labor Standards has created a summary to post for the convenience of Missouri employers. You also may print a Spanish Minimum Wage Summary Poster. Please post the summary in a conspicuous and accessible place at the business.

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I make $7.75 per hour now. When the Missouri Minimum Wage increased to $7.50 and my employer raised other people to $7.50, should I have gotten a raise also?

That is not required by law.

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Does the Missouri Minimum Wage affect salaried employees?

The Missouri Minimum Wage Law could apply if a salaried employee does not fall within any of the exemptions in the law and his or her salary does not equal the minimum wage rate per hour for all hours worked in a workweek.

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If the federal minimum wage is less than Missouri′s minimum wage, what will happen if I decide to pay only the lower federal rate?

You will be in violation of the law. If the Missouri Division of Labor Standards receives a complaint or becomes aware of a situation where an employer, who is covered by the law, is not paying the Missouri minimum wage, the office will conduct an investigation to assure compliance.

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What can I do if I believe I am not being paid the minimum wage rate and/or overtime rate?

If you believe you are not being paid correctly, you can contact the Missouri Division of Labor Standards at 573-751-3403 or minimumwage@labor.mo.gov to file a complaint.

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If it is determined that I was not paid minimum wage rate and/or overtime rate, what steps will be taken to collect wages due me?

The Division of Labor Standards will conduct an investigation to assure compliance with the minimum wage law. If it is determined that wages are due, we will attempt to collect on your behalf. However, Missouri does not have a wage collection law. Therefore, no state agency, including the Division of Labor Standards, has authority to pursue your claim for back wages for you through the courts. In instances where it is determined that wages are due, and we are unable to collect on your behalf, you will be notified of your right to bring a legal action to collect the claim yourself. An employer who pays an employee wages less than what they are due under the minimum wage law shall be liable for the full amount of the wage rate and an additional equal amount as liquidated damages, less any amount actually paid, and for costs and such reasonable attorney fees as may be allowed by the court or jury.

The time limit for all actions for the collection of any deficiency in wages is two years from the accrual of the cause of action. See 290.527, RSMo at http://www.moga.mo.gov/statutes/c200-299/2900000527.htm.

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As an employer subject to the provisions of the Missouri Minimum Wage Law, what records am I required to keep and how long should they be kept?

You should keep a record of the name, address, and job description of each employee; the rate of pay and the amount paid each pay period to each employee; and the number of hours worked each day and each workweek by the employee. These records should be kept on or about the premises for a period of no less than three years.

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To whom do I have to provide the records?

The records shall be open for inspection by the Department Director or his authorized representative. When the records are kept outside the state, they shall be made available upon demand.

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Will my records be made available to the public?

All records and information obtained by the Department of Labor and Industrial Relations, Division of Labor Standards, pursuant to a minimum wage investigation are confidential and shall be disclosed only on order of a court of competent jurisdiction.

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Can deductions for the employer′s benefit (such as deductions for damage caused by the employee or for repayment of loans to the employee) be made from an employee's paycheck?

Yes, but only so long as any such deduction does not take a covered employee's wages below the state hourly minimum wage rate.

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