By On behalf of The Law Offices of Roderick V. Hannah, Esq., P.A.

Good news for Florida’s minimum-wage workers: A recent piece of legislation has raised the minimum wage by 14 cents. Starting on Jan. 1, employers must give their minimum-wage workers a raise so that they are properly compensated for changes to the cost of living in the state. Officials and job seekers alike say they are pleased with the decision, as people who need the money most will see a change in their paychecks.

In all, the law’s changes are expected to benefit some 416,000 Florida residents. Additional provisions in the mandate also require a raise for tipped workers, who must receive $4.91 per hour after the first of the year.

Still, those who oppose the measure say that the new wage laws are likely to hurt the very people they are intended to help. Now, employers will be more likely to eliminate minimum-wage positions in order to save money. They may also choose to cut hours to cut costs, and the prices of goods in stores may rise to accommodate the shift in payroll costs. Experts in the field say that large numbers of minimum-wage jobs have been lost since the minimum wage began its meteoric rise in the 1980s and 1990s. Job seekers and those at the other end of the spectrum fully support the changes, however, as they believe that the changes are more likely to benefit low-income earners.

No matter their profession, workers in Florida deserve the protection of fair wage laws and hour laws that prevent them from falling into poverty. Many workers are willing to put in the effort, but minimum wage does not always pay the bills. Even a minute increase can prove revolutionary for many Florida families. Employees who think they have been the victims of wage laws violations may benefit from the expertise of a qualified employment attorney, who can help them learn more about their legal rights and responsibilities, helping them get the compensation they need and have earned.

Source: WTEV 47, “Minimum wage to increase in Florida” Brittany Jones, Dec. 19, 2013