California State and Local Minimum Wage Rates 2021

Updated August 22, 2021

The California state minimum wage increased on January 1, 2021 – and many California local minimum wage rates increased on July 1, 2021.

Here is everything you need to know:

California State Minimum Wage 2021

California minimum wage 2021

Effective January 1, 2021 for employers with 25 or less employees, the state of California minimum wage is $13 per hour. Businesses with 26 or more employees have a minimum wage of $14 per hour.

Looking ahead, California employers can anticipate the following rate increases in future years:

DateLarge Employers
(26+ Employees)
Small Employers
(25 or fewer Employees)
January 1, 2021$14$13
January 1, 2022$15$14
January 1, 2023Adjustment for inflation$15

An employer with 26 or more employees at any time during a pay period should apply the higher minimum wage to all employees for that pay period. If an employer’s workforce falls below 26 employees the employer does not need to automatically lower their minimum wage rate.

However, if the minimum wage is reduced because the threshold falls below 26 employees, the employer must notify the affected employees in advance before reducing their wages.

Important to note, there are Minimum Salary Exemptions for California such as computer software professionals. To learn about any of these exemptions in California, or any state, please message us.

California Local Minimum Wage 2021

Local jurisdictions – Counties or Cities – may have their own minimum wage that may trump the State minimum wage. Employers must pay the rate that benefits the employee. Please check the tables below for more information.

Effective Jan 1, 2021

JurisdictionLarge Employers
(26+ Employees)
Small Employers
(25 or fewer Employees)
Alameda$15.00$15.00
Berkeley$16.07$16.07
Emeryville$16.84
+ Consumer Price Index (“CPI”)
$16.84
+ Consumer Price Index (“CPI”)
Fremont$15.00$13.50
Los Angeles
(City & Unincorporated Areas
of County)
$15.00$14.25
Malibu$15.00$14.25
Milpitas$15.40$15.40
Novato$15.00
($15.24 for Very Large Employers
with 100+ Employees)
$14.00
Pasadena$15.00$15.00
San Francisco$16.07$16.07
South San Francisco$15.25$15.25
San Leandro$15.00$15.00
Santa Monica$15.00$14.25
Santa Rosa$15.20$15.20

Effective Jul 1, 2021

JurisdictionLarge Employers
(26+ Employees)
Small Employers
(25 or fewer Employees)
Alameda [source]$15.00$15.00
Berkeley [source]$16.32$16.32
Emeryville [source]$17.13
+ Consumer Price Index (“CPI”)
$17.13
+ Consumer Price Index (“CPI”)
Fremont [source]$15.25$15.00
Los Angeles [source]
(City & Unincorporated Areas
of County)
$15.00$15.00
Malibu [source]$15.00$15.00
Milpitas [source]$15.65$15.65
Novato [source]$15.00
($15.24 for Very Large Employers
with 100+ Employees)
$14.00
Pasadena [source]$15.00$15.00
San Francisco [source]$16.32$16.32
South San Francisco [source]$15.25$15.25
San Leandro [source]$15.00$15.00
Santa Monica [source]$15.00
(plus temporary $5.00 ‘Hero pay’
for some essential workers)
$15.00
Santa Rosa [source]$15.20$15.20

To keep your business up to date with the current Minimum Wage in your local jurisdiction or state, why not use our Labor Law Poster Service – you’ll be updated automatically based on your state, industry, and employee size.

Selected Other States

Hawaii Minimum Wage 2021

Hawaii minimum wage 2021

Since January 1, 2018 the minimum wage in Hawaii is $10.10 per hour.

Arizona Minimum Wage 2021

Arizona minimum wage 2021

Effective January 1, 2021, through December 31, 2021, the minimum wage in Arizona is $12.15 per hour. It is due to increase each year by the cost of living.

Other States

We are currently servicing small businesses, CPAs and accountants in most states and are constantly expanding. Please reach out to us if you don’t see your state listed.

Always double-check the minimum wage in your area, as governed by the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), to verify this article has the most current information.

Things can change rapidly during a pandemic. We are here to help you through these changing regulations.

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