Alerts and Updates

Los Angeles Approves Minimum Wage Increase to $15 Per Hour

May 27, 2015

City officials estimate the plan will increase the pay of 800,000 Los Angeles workers.

On May 19, 2015, the Los Angeles City Council voted 14 to 1 in favor of a gradual increase in the minimum wage to $15 per hour, which will be phased in as follows:

July 1, 2016 - $10.50 per hour.
July 1, 2017 - $12.00 per hour.
July 1, 2018 - $13.25 per hour.
July 1, 2019 - $14.25 per hour.
July 1, 2020 - $15.00 per hour.

The increases are delayed by one year for employers with 25 or fewer employees (i.e., $10.50 by July 1, 2017; $12 by July 1, 2018, etc.). In addition, starting in 2022, the Los Angeles minimum wage will increase annually based on the Consumer Price Index. By this vote, Los Angeles joins other major U.S. cities, including San Francisco and Chicago, that require a minimum wage in excess of federal law.

The increase will likely have widespread effects; some estimate approximately 50 percent of the Los Angeles workforce earns less than $15 per hour.[1] City officials estimate the plan will increase the pay of 800,000 Los Angeles workers.[2]

Prior to the increase becoming effective, City Attorney Mike Feuer has to draft a final ordinance for approval by Mayor Eric Garcetti and the City Council. Mayor Garcetti has already promised to sign the wage increase into law. That is anticipated to occur next month.[3]

For Further Information

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  1. Jennifer Medina and Noam Scheiber, “Los Angeles Lifts Its Minimum Wage to $15 Per Hour," New York Times, May 19, 2015, available at
  2. Alex Dobuzinskis, "Los Angeles Gives Preliminary Approval to $15 Minimum Wage," Reuters, May 19, 2015, available at
  3. Peter Jamison, David Zahniser and Alice Walton, "Los Angeles' Minimum Wage on Track to Go Up to $15 by 2020," Los Angeles Times, available at

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