Connecticut Minimum Wage and Wage Orders

Connecticut revised its minimum wage posting and five industry-specific wage orders to reflect increases in its minimum wage rate increases that took effect January 1, 2014.

The revisions are considered mandatory, and employers in the affected industries must display the most current version of the wage order appropriate to their business classification.

The minimum wage posting (aka the Administration Regulations Poster) and other postings required for Connecticut employers are available as part of GovDocs Connecticut labor law poster packages in print and electronic formats.

What is the Connecticut Minimum Wage?

Connecticut was the first state in the U.S. to schedule a minimum wage increase to $10.10 per hour. The increase will occur in stages by 2017. For workers not covered by industry-specific wage orders, the standard Connecticut minimum wage rate schedule is:

  • January 1, 2014: $8.70
  • January 1, 2015: $9.15
  • January 1, 2016: $9.60
  • January 1, 2016: $10.10

What is a Connecticut Wage Order?

Along with California and New York, Connecticut is one of three states that requires employers in certain industries to post industry-specific wage orders that define and regulate:

  • Minimum fair wage rates
  • Calculation of payment
  • Overtime rates
  • Uniform, housing, and transportation allowances
  • Record-keeping requirements for employers

Connecticut established five separate wage orders covering restaurants, dry cleaners, laundry, beauty shop and mercantile businesses who must display the wage order specific to their industry for employees. Each wage order establishes a sub-minimum wage specific to those industries.

Connecticut Wage Order for Restaurant and Hotel Restaurant Occupations

Mandatory Order Number 8 details the minimum fair wage requirements for restaurant employees who are:

“engaged in the preparation and serving of food for human consumption, or in any operation incidental or supplemental thereto irrespective of whether the food is served at or away from the point of preparation, and irrespective of whether the preparation and serving of food is the sole business of the employing establishment.”

Tipped table service workers (waitstaff) earn:

  • January 1, 2014: $5.69 per hour plus gratuities
  • January 1, 2015: $5.78 per hour plus gratuities
  • January 1, 2016: $6.07 per hour plus gratuities
  • January 1, 2016: $6.38 per hour plus gratuities

Bartenders earn:

  • January 1, 2014: $7.34 per hour plus gratuities
  • January 1, 2015: $7.46 per hour plus gratuities
  • January 1, 2016: $7.82 per hour plus gratuities
  • January 1, 2016: $8.23 per hour plus gratuities

In addition to the statutes covering wage and hour laws which are contained in Title 31, Chapter 558, there are specific wage orders with regulations that cover restaurants, mercantile establishments, beauty shops, dry cleaning and laundry. The Administrative Regulations cover all other businesses. Posters with these regulations must be posted at the place of business. Connecticut also provides Spanish versions of the Administrative Regulations and the Restaurant Wage Order.

Minor Employees in Restaurants

Connecticut restaurants employing minors need to limit the hours worked by staff aged 16-17 years old; for example:

During the school years, minor employees may be scheduled only between 6 a.m. to 11 p.m. on days when there is school in session the following day (or until midnight if there is no school the following day) – and no more than six hours per day for a total of 32 hours per week.

The minimum wage for minor workers (17 or younger) is:

  • January 1, 2014: $8.70
  • January 1, 2015: $9.15
  • January 1, 2016: $9.60
  • January 1, 2016: $10.10

For more information about the regulation of minors employed in Connecticut restaurants, see the Connecticut Employment of Minors posting, which must be displayed by restaurants employing workers under the age of 18 years.

For more information, download the free A Guide to Wage and Workplace Standards Division and Its Laws from Connecticut Department of Labor (CDOL) Wage and Workplace Standards Division (WWSD).


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