EMPLOYMENT LAW NEWS

Los Angeles County Announces Minimum Wage Increase

By Dana Holle, GovDocs Associate Counsel
Employment Law and Compliance
Published Feb. 13, 2024
Los Angeles County Minimum Wage Update

An overview of Los Angeles County’s updated minimum wage rates and the process that determines those rates for LA County employers.

Effective July 1, 2024, Los Angeles County’s minimum wage rate increases to $17.27.  

A Brief Background of LA County’s Minimum Wage Rates

Back in 2015, Los Angeles County’s Board of Supervisors adopted a minimum wage ordinance (Ord. 2024-0039), which gradually increased the minimum wage in the unincorporated areas of the county each year until it reached $15.00 on July 1, 2020, for large employers and July 1, 2021, for small employers. Beginning on July 1, 2022, and continuing each year thereafter, the minimum wage adjusts for cost-of-living increases based on the consumer price index for the Los Angeles metropolitan area.  

At the start of each year, the Chief Executive Office of L.A. County announces the upcoming adjusted rates that take effect the following July 1. Accordingly, the Chief Executive Office announced in January that the minimum wage in unincorporated L.A. County will increase to $17.27 per hour on July 1, 2024.  

Minimum Wage Requirements 

Most notably, the L.A. County minimum wage rate only applies to employees who perform at least two hours of work per week within the unincorporated areas of L.A. County for an employer. The L.A. County minimum wage does not apply to the 88 incorporated cities in the county. Incorporated cities without their own minimum wage ordinances will continue to follow the State of California minimum wage while the following incorporated cities have their own minimum wage requirements: 

  • City of Los Angeles 
  • Malibu 
  • Pasadena 
  • Santa Monica 
  • West Hollywood 

Each of the incorporated cities listed above will also update on July 1, 2024; the City of Los Angeles will increase to $17.28 and Malibu to $17.27. In addition to the standard minimum wage rates, several cities in L.A. County have passed their own hotel worker minimum wage ordinances updating on July 1, specifically the City of Los Angeles, Glendale, Long Beach, Santa Monica, and West Hollywood. In addition, California’s state legislature recently passed fast food worker and healthcare worker minimum wage laws that go into effect on April 1, 2024, and June 1, 2024, respectively, which may also apply to certain employer locations.  

Employers should further note that they are prohibited from taking tip credits under California’s minimum wage law. Therefore, both regular and tipped employees in unincorporated L.A. County should receive at least $17.27 on July 1, 2024. In addition, there is no longer a separate, lower rate for small employers, or businesses with less than 26 employees, as all covered employers now update on July 1 to the same rate.  

Posting Requirements 

After the new minimum wage rate is announced, the L.A. County Department of Consumer and Business Affairs (DCBA) is required to publish an updated Minimum Wage Workplace Posting and Official Notice, which every employer must post in a conspicuous area of any workplace or jobsite location within unincorporated L.A. County. According to the DCBA, the poster must be 8 ½ inches by 14 inches in size and written in 10-point font at a minimum.  

At this time, the updated minimum wage posters have not been released, but the GovDocs Labor Law Poster Program actively monitors and researches poster updates to send out updated L.A. County posters to customer locations before the July 1 update.  

Managing Minimum Wage Rates in L.A. County 

Employers with locations in L.A. County should be aware of the multiple rates that may apply, whether at the state, county, or city level. Applying the incorrect minimum wage rate creates significant wage and hour compliance risks for employers, so location-specific minimum wage rate management is a great solution for tracking and adjusting wage rates in complex areas like L.A. County.  

This Employment Law News blog is intended for market awareness only, it is not to be used for legal advice or counsel.

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