Washington Computer Professional Minimum Wage

September 16, 2022


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Profile of a hispanic freelancer wearing glasses and reading the coding software on the computer. Focused programmer checking the app code

Washington State has one of the highest minimum wage rates in the United States. Some professions have a higher wage rate in Washington than anywhere else. In 2020, Washington state law established a new minimum wage for computer professionals.

Washington State Minimum Wages In 2024

The 2024 statewide minimum wage for Washington workers aged 16 and older is $16.28 per hour, with some exceptions:

14- and 15-year-olds: Washington State minimum wage for this age range is $13.84 an hour.

Seattle workers:

  • $19.97 an hour (large employers with 501 or more employees)
  • $19.97 an hour (small employers with 500 or fewer employees who do not pay at least $2.72 an hour toward the employee’s medical benefits and/or where the employee does not earn at least $2.72 an hour in tips.)
  • $17.25 an hour (small employers who do pay at least $2.72/hour toward the employee’s medical benefits and/or where the employee does earn at least $2.72 an hour in tips.

SeaTac hospitality and transportation employees: Hotel and transportation employees within the city limits of SeaTac earn $19.71 an hour.

Computer professionals: Exempt computer programmers and other computer professionals earn $56.98 per hour.

What Is A Computer Professional?

Washington law defines a computer professional as someone who is a computer programmer, computer system analyst, software engineer, or similarly skilled worker. As of 2023, the minimum wage for computer professionals in Washington is 3.5x the minimum wage, or $55.09. This wage will increase over time as the state-wide minimum wage increases.

The Washington computer professional minimum wage does NOT include workers that manufacture, repair, or complete maintenance of computer hardware and related equipment. It also does not include workers who may use computers regularly but do not engage in computer systems analysis and programming or other similar computer-related occupations.

What Is The Difference Between Exempt Vs. Non-Exempt Employees?

Per the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) the difference between exempt and non-exempt employees is whether they qualify for overtime pay.

  • Exempt employees do NOT qualify for overtime pay
  • Non-exempt employees DO qualify for overtime pay

Other differences include pay grades, whether the employee is covered by FMLA, and job duties. Knowing how your job is classified will help you better understand what your rights are as an employee. If you’re not sure whether you are exempt or non-exempt, check with your HR department.

Unpaid Overtime And Wage Discrepancies

One of the many issues we hear about wages from clients involves unpaid overtime. Non-exempt employees qualify for overtime pay, but some employers don’t pay it properly, or even at all. If you are owed overtime pay or not being paid the proper minimum wage, give the employment attorneys at Emery | Reddy a call. You deserve to be paid for your time and labor, and we can help. Call us today to find out how we can help!

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