The minimum wage is a debate that’s still confusing, especially for new workers. The least you should earn from your employer is dependent on many things.
Anyone who works to ensure that the society develops by dedicating their time in a given field should be compensated fairly. After all, these people also have families who depend on them to meet their basic needs. As such, every government has set a minimum wage that any employee should receive at the end of every month. The main reason for this is to nurture fairness and get rid of those employers looking to take advantage of workers.
Minimum wage may vary from state to state and country to country. Therefore, the least you can be paid is not necessarily equal to what your friend within another jurisdiction should receive. But, how will you know the minimum amount to expect from your employer? This post tackles the nitty-gritty of a minimum wage.
What is a Minimum Wage?
The phrase “minimum wage” could have different meanings, depending on how you look at it. As such, it is important to understand its definition before you sign that contract with your new employer. Simply put, it is the minimum amount of remuneration that all wage earners should receive from their employers after working over a given period of time.
The set figure cannot be reduced, whether in an individual contract or via a collective agreement. Any employer who tries to go against this risks legal repercussions. It is worth noting that this only applies to those employed on a full-time basis. Hence, if you are a freelancer or working along that line, you are not protected by the minimum wage bill.
How Much Should You Expect as Your Minimum Wage?
As earlier stated, minimum wages differ with jurisdictions. The main discrepancy is how the wage rule is applied. Your net income constitutes various components, including basic salary, annual bonuses, performance pay, tips, and allowances.
In some countries, all the components are taken into account, while others disregard some of them. In fact, there are states where only basic pay is included in the minimum wage calculation. Usually, hourly rates are used to find your minimum monthly salary. This amount can range from $4.50 to $10.50 per hour. Of course, this is just an average; you could be entitled to less or more than these limits.
Remember, your traveling time is also taken into account when summing up the hourly rates. However, payable traveling time should be related to your work. For instance, if you’ve been sent on a mission and you take breaks along the way, they are considered as working time. Moving from a training center to your station during working hours, waiting for a train or delivery goods, and meeting someone in connection with your job are all payable. However, rest breaks during such situations are not included in your wage calculation.
Exemption from the Minimum Wage Law
Note that this law does not apply to every worker. As already stated in the article, only those employees working on a full-time basis are eligible. However, this is not as conclusive as you’d like; so, have a look at some of the workers who are not eligible for the minimum payment.
Independent contractors, for one, are not covered by this part of the law. Therefore, if you are a freelance engineer, accountant, or any other related profession, the hiring company will pay you strictly according to the agreement. Tipped employees may also receive payments lower than the minimum wage. Examples of personnel under this category are the restaurant servers.
Age may also play a role in the minimum wage you get paid. If you are aged below 20 years, the rule to be applied will be different. You won’t necessarily be exempted from the law, but your minimum wage will vary from the rest of the employees. But, this is only applicable for your first 90 days at work. After which, you’ll fall in the general category regardless of age. If you are a student on attachment, the federal laws dictate that you receive at least 85% of the minimum wage.
The minimum wage is a debate that’s still confusing, especially for new workers. The least you should earn from your employer is dependent on many things, and your location is just one part of the equation. Before you start looking into the law, you should first make sure that you are eligible for the minimum wage. Independent contractors, for instance, are not included in this bracket. The same applies to tipped workers and casual babysitters. In which category do you fall?