Wage and hour laws are determined individually by the states. These laws are separate from federal labor laws, which apply to any business with a yearly income of $500,000 or more. Some state laws will be similar or the same to federal laws, but others will differ. It is important to know which laws apply to your specific circumstances and in your specific state.
Some states have adopted few wage and hour laws, deferring instead to the Fair Labour Standards Act (FLSA). The FLSA applies to all of the employees of qualifying enterprises, no matter their responsibilities or the duties they perform. Conditions of the FLSA include a minimum wage of $7.25 per hour, overtime pay, recordkeeping requirements, and child labor laws. Use the FLSA Coverage and Employment Status Advisor online tool to check if you or your employees are covered by the FLSA.
Other states have more extensive wage and hour laws. For example, many states have set a higher minimum wage than the FLSA dictates. Employees in those states are entitled to the higher wage, even though the federal law still applies. State wage and hour laws often regulate the relationship between employers and employees more extensively than federal law. For example, many states have set requirements for minimum paid rest periods, meal breaks, or overtime restrictions.
If you are an employer, it is essential that you abide not only by federal labor laws, but also by specific wage and hour laws in your state. Below are links to summaries of state wage and hour laws: