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Minimum Wage Rates

San Francisco has its own minimum wage law which mandates higher wages than California state law. Here is a chart of San Francisco’s recent minimum wage history.

San Francisco Minimum Wage Rates
Effective DateMinimum Wage Hourly Rate
5-1-15$12.25
7-1-16$13.00
7-1-17$14.00
7-1-18$15.00

Employees in other Bay Area cities are entitled to at least the California minimum wage, but if the city you work in has an additional minimum wage ordinance, then you are entitled to that minimum wage rate as well.

If you work in the Bay Area and are not familiar with your city’s wage ordinance, please contact us. One of our employment attorneys will be happy to help you identify the most beneficial wage rate that you might be entitled to earn.

Who is Covered by the San Francisco Minimum Wage Law?

The law applies to anyone who works more than two hours in a week within the City of San Francisco is covered. A person’s place of residence if not a factor. In other words, a person does not need to live in San Francisco to be covered.

How do the Federal and State Laws Minimum Wage Laws Apply to San Francisco Workers?

The higher rate of San Francisco’s city law applies even though Federal and California state law have lower rates. Whenever there is a conflict of laws, the law that is most beneficial to the employee applies.

Working Off the Clock in San Francisco

Off the clock work is a common minimum wage violation. This happens when an employer does not account for all hours worked and it can result in a lower pay hourly pay rate. For example, if a restaurant does not pay employees for time spent doing preparation work or opening up the restaurant, then an employee’s wage rate may fall below the minimum wage rate.

Waiters and Waitresses

Waiters and waitresses in San Francisco are also entitled to the city’s minimum wage, and restaurant employers in California cannot use an employee’s tips as credit towards the minimum wage. This means that if you are a waiter or waitress in San Francisco, you must be paid the full city minimum wage in addition to your tips.

Commissioned Sales People

Unlike tips, commissions may be credited towards the San Francisco minimum wage. This means that commissioned salespeople are still entitled to the city’s minimum wage, but that obligation can be met by using their earned commissions.

Your employer is required to provide you with a written agreement explaining the details of how your commission will be calculated. This may vary from company to company, and from position to position within a company. If you have specific questions or concerns about your commission situation, please contact us. We will be happy to review your situation and clarify any sources of confusion.

What can I do if I’m not Being Paid the Minimum Wage?

If you are not being paid the highest minimum wage that you are entitled to earn — whether that is the federal, California, or city wage — please contact us for a consultation. One of our highly practiced San Francisco employment lawyers will explain your rights and discuss your options for legal redress. The Ottinger Employment Lawyers has extensive experience with both individual and class action minimum wage claims. We are here to assist you, and our attorneys have the expertise necessary to ensure that you are compensated fairly for your hours worked.

Contact the California Department of Industrial Relations to learn more about minimum wage regulations.

How to Find Us in San Francisco

Our office is conveniently located at 535 Mission Street, 14th Floor in Downtown San Francisco. Please call ahead to schedule a consultation.

Ottinger Employment Lawyers
535 Mission St 14th Floor
San Francisco, CA 94105
Phone: (415) 325-2088

Office Hours:
Mon-Fri 9:00 am to 6:00 pm.

If traveling by Bart, see their info here.

Contact us at (415) 325-2088 to see if we can help you. Directions to our SF Office.

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