North Carolina Labor Laws – Wage and Hour


North Carolina Labor Laws – Wage and Hour



Minimum Wage

North Carolina’s current minimum wage is $7.25.

For more information on North Carolina’s minimum wage laws, visit our North Carolina Minimum Wage Laws page, which includes topics such as minimum wage, tip minimum wage, tip sharing and pooling, and subminimum wages.

Related topic covered on other pages include:

  • Compensable time (hours worked)
  • Minimum wage and overtime exemptions


  • Overtime

    North Carolina labor laws require an employer to pay overtime to employees, unless otherwise exempt, at the rate of 1½ times the employee’s regular rate of pay for all hours worked in excess of 40 hours in a workweek. NC Dept. of Workforce Solutions FAQs. See FLSA: Overtime for more information regarding overtime requirements.




    Meals and Breaks

    North Carolina labor laws require employers to provide employees fourteen (14) or fifteen (15) years of age with a thirty (30) minute break when scheduled to work over five (5) hours. NCGS 95-25.5(e).

    North Carolina employers are not required to provide either a rest break (generally ten (10) or fifteen (15) minutes) or a meal break (usually thirty (30) minutes or more) for anyone who is sixteen (16) years of age or older. However, in accordance with federal law, if an employer chooses to provide additional breaks, they must be paid. Meal or lunch periods do not need to be paid, so long as the employee is free to do as they wish during the meal or lunch period. NC Dept. of Labor Facts.



    Vacation Leave

    Information about North Carolina vacation leave laws may now be found on our North Carolina Leave Laws page.



    Sick Leave

    Information about North Carolina sick leave laws may now be found on our North Carolina Leave Laws page.



    Holiday Leave

    Information about North Carolina holiday leave laws may now be found on our North Carolina Leave Laws page.



    Jury Duty Leave

    Information about North Carolina jury duty leave laws may now be found on our North Carolina Leave Laws page.



    Voting Leave

    Information about North Carolina voting leave laws may now be found on our North Carolina Leave Laws page.



    Severance Pay

    North Carolina labor laws do not require employers to provide employees with severance pay. If an employer chooses to provide severance benefits, it must comply with the terms of its established policy or employment contract.