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Breaking News: Minimum Wage in Illinois set to Increase to $15 by 2025

Last week we reported that a new Illinois Minimum Wage law is all but certain to pass before the end of February. A $15 per hour minimum wage bill was introduced and had the support of newly elected governor J.B. Pritzker.

The Illinois General Assembly has now passed the bill. Governor Pritzker is expected to sign it in a matter of days.

Here are the details:

Graduated Increase

  • $8.25 per hour to $9.25 per hour on 1/1/2020
  • $9.25 per hour to $10.00 per hour on 7/1/2020
  • $10.00 per hour to $11.00 per hour on 1/1/2021
  • $11.00 per hour to $12.00 per hour on 1/1/2022
  • $12.00 per hour to $13.00 per hour on 1/1/2023
  • $13.00 per hour to $14.00 per hour on 1/1/2024
  • $14.00 per hour to $15.00 per hour on 1/1/2025

Tips Count Towards Minimum Wage

Restaurants and other employers with tipped workers count gratuities towards wages.

Tip Tax Credit For Employers

Tax credit to help businesses with 50 or fewer employees to offset some of the cost of the wage increases.

Workers Younger Than 18

If they work fewer than 650 hours in a year, the current $7.25 per hour would increase on 1/1/2020 to $8.00 per hour and peak at $13.00 per hour in 2025.

Minimum wage laws can be monumentally confusing. The usual principle is supremacy of federal law. The federal law calls for a $7.25 minimum wage. However, the federal Fair Labor Standards Act has a specific provision that more employee-friendly laws by state or local governments will trump federal law. That is why such a confusing patchwork has been created. Below is a summary.

1. US Law – $ 7.25 per hour – Bills are routinely pending in Congress to increase this, but with the current administration, no changes appear likely.

2. Illinois Law – $8.25 per hour. The new law will gradually hike it to $15.

3. City of Chicago – $12 per hour. The City of Chicago ordinance automatically increases to $13 per hour on July 1, 2019.

4. Cook County – $11 per hour. This increases to $12 per hour July 1, 2019.

The Cook County ordinance provides that municipalities can opt out, and most have. The reality, however, is that where there is a high minimum wage law in geographic proximity to an employer’s place of business, wages will be dramatically impacted. Employers will find hiring of new employees to be difficult, if not impossible, if they are paying lower than a minimum wage law in that particular area even though that law doesn’t apply to them.

Anthony J. Caruso, Jr., in our St. Charles office is monitoring the situation closely. If you have any questions, please contact Tony at (630) 377-1554 or by email at

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