Effective January 1, 2008

Minimum Wage $8.00 
M.G.L. chapter 151, sections 1 and 2

Who is Covered

The minimum wage law applies to all employees except those being rehabilitated or trained in charitable, educational, or religious institutions; members of religious orders; agricultural, floricultural, and horticultural workers; those in professional service, and outside salespersons not reporting to or visiting their office daily. The Massachusetts minimum wage is $8.00 per hour. Tipped employees may be paid $2.63 per hour. However, if the employee does not receive $8.00 per hour including tips, the employer must make up the difference. The minimum hourly wage for agricultural employees is $1.60.

For further information regarding the Massachusetts minimum wage, contact the Massachusetts Division of Labor Standards at (617) 626-6952.

Payment of Wages

Employers must pay their employees within six days of the end of the pay period during which the wages were earned if the individual was employed for five or six days during the pay period. If the employee was employed for seven days or a period of less than three days, they must be paid no later than seven days from the end of the pay period.

Termination Pay

Discharged (fired or laid off) employees must be paid all wages due and owing on the day of termination. The term "wages" includes all vacation time earned under the employer's written or oral policy.

Wage Deductions

Employers may only deduct only the amount that would have been paid during the time the employee was late. In addition, all employers must furnish a pay slip or check stub showing the employer's name, employee's name, date, number of hours worked, hourly rate of pay and amounts of deductions or increases made for the pay period

Tip Pooling

Under Mass. General Laws, c.149, s.152A, an employer can require service employees to pool their tips only with other service employees, service bartenders, or wait staff. Total proceeds of a tip or service charge contained in a bill must be remitted only to wait staff employees or service bartenders in proportion to the service provided by those employees. Under no circumstances may management employees or owners receive any portion of their employees' tips.