In the United States, employers have specific guidelines to follow when it comes to compensation they provide and the schedules they expect their employees to work. State and federal laws are not necessarily the same, and there are many exceptions, which makes comprehension essential for compliance.
Minimum Wage in Iowa
The minimum hourly rate for workers in Iowa is set at $7.25, which is the same as the federal rate. During the first 90 days of a worker’s employment, the employer has the option to pay an initial employment wage of $6.35 per hour.
Minimum Wage of Tipped Workers: Tipped workers must make at least $7.25 per hour to meet the Iowa minimum wage guidelines. Employers must pay an hourly wage of at least $4.35, which is higher than the federal minimum of $2.13 for tipped workers. If employees receive at least $30 worth of tips each month, the tipped amount is added to the $4.35 hourly wage. The employer only has to pay the difference between that amount and the $7.25 rate.
Does Minimum Wage Apply to Me: The federal rate generally applies to companies that have an annual gross of at least $500,000 in sales or business as well as some other types of employers. In Iowa, this minimum amount is $300,000. The minimum wage law may not apply to farmworkers, sales employees who receive commission, commercial drivers, seasonal workers and others.
When Are Raises Required: The Iowa minimum wage may be raised by a vote of the state legislature. It would also be increased by a raise in the federal minimum wage, which depends on an act passed by Congress and signed by the president. Individual companies are required by law to honor any raises promised by contract to their employees.
Work Hours in Iowa
Although Iowa law does place restrictions on the hours that minors 15 and younger may work, there are no other limits unless they are included by contract. Federal law limits the number of hours per day that are allowed for truck drivers and some other jobs.
Paying Overtime: Federal law requires employers to pay workers a rate of 1.5 times the minimum hourly wage for every hour after 40 that is worked in a workweek comprised of seven consecutive days. Overtime compensation is $10.875 per hour. There are some workers who are subject to overtime exemptions, such as teachers, firefighters and seamen.
Guaranteed Breaks and Meals: Other than minors and those protected by union contracts, employees do not have to be given breaks except to use the toilet. If an employer does provide breaks for workers, they may be paid or unpaid depending on the company’s policy.
Paid Time Off and Sick Pay: Employers in Iowa do not have to provide paid vacation and sick leave benefits unless they have agreed to it in a policy or contract, in which case they must honor it.
Notice Period for Employee Termination: Iowa is an employment-at-will state, so employers do not have to notify workers in advance before firing them in most cases. The company does not have to provide a reason for the termination, but if an employee believes it is the result of retaliation or discrimination, he or she may have grounds to file a lawsuit. Employers must follow all of their own contracts and policies.
Plant Closings & Layoffs: Federal law offers protection for employees who may be affected by a plant closing or mass layoff. Under the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act, employees must be provided at least 60 days’ notice in advance of a single-site layoff that includes at least 50 workers if the company employs over 100 full-time workers. This notification allows time to begin training or searching for new employment.
The content on our website is only meant to provide general information and is not legal advice. We make our best efforts to make sure the information is accurate, but we cannot guarantee it. Do not rely on the content as legal advice. For assistance with legal problems or for a legal inquiry please contact you attorney.