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Washington D.C. Law Changes Effective July 1st, 2019

Dome of the Washington D.C. Capitol Building

Lawmakers made changes in Washington D.C. effective July 1st that may affect your business. First, minimum wage in D.C. increased due to the Fair Shot Minimum Wage Amendment Act of 2016. Additionally, the DC Office of Paid Family Leave (OPFL) made changes to the program. Here’s what you need to know:

Changes to the Paid Family Leave Program

The Paid Leave Act provides employees with job security while on leave for a personal matter. If qualified, the employee can leave for 8 weeks to bond with a new child, can take 6 weeks off to care for a family member in serious health conditions, and can leave for 2 weeks for their own health conditions. Starting July 1st, taxes will be collected from businesses to support the paid family leave program. The taxes will be paid out officially on July 1st, 2020. According to the Department of Employment Services, private sector employers in the District will pay a 0.62% tax beginning July 1, 2019 to fund paid-leave benefits. The Paid Family Leave tax will not be deducted from the worker’s paycheck and will be 100% employer-funded.  

Minimum wage increase

It’s extremely important to ensure that you are paying your employees at least minimum wage. This complies with the FLSA, which protects employees’ rights. The minimum wage in DC increased from $13.25 per hour to $14.00 per hour. Also, tipped workers will receive a wage increase from $3.89 to $4.45 per hour. The increase was signed into law by Mayor Muriel Bowser. According to the act, employees will expect an “increase to the minimum wage to $15.00 an hour in 2020 and an increase to the minimum wage during each successive year in proportion to the increase in the Consumer Price Index.”

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