Are You Ready for 2022 Minimum Wage Changes?

November 9, 2021

As you prepare your nonprofit’s 2022 budget, have you ensured that all your employees meet the minimum hourly wage as well as the minimum salary threshold for any overtime exempt employees? In Washington state, the minimum wage and minimum salary threshold for overtime exemption rises each year with inflation. Make sure your nonprofit is in compliance by paying your workers above these levels starting January 1, 2022:

  • 2022 State minimum wage: $14.49 per hour (higher for the cities of Seattle and SeaTac)
  • 2022 salary level below which you must pay overtime:
    • Small employers (up to 50 employees): $52,743.60 per year
    • Large employers (51 or more employees): $52,743.60 per year

For small employers, the 2022 minimum salary threshold is increasing by over $10,000 from the 2021 level. It is important to note that the minimum salary threshold for overtime exemption is the same for small and large employers in 2022, which is not the case every year of the implementation schedule as the increases are more incremental for small employers. If your nonprofit has exempt employees with salaries below the 2022 minimum salary threshold, there are options to consider.

  • Convert salaried-exempt employees to salaried-nonexempt or hourly-nonexempt and pay any overtime accrued or limit hours to 40 hours per workweek
  • Maintain as salaried-exempt employees by ensuring the workers meet the job duties test requirements and minimum salary threshold

Remember that each year through 2028, the minimum salary threshold will rise according to this schedule until it reaches 2.5 times the minimum wage (expected to be approximately $85,000). After 2028, the minimum salary threshold will remain 2.5 times the minimum wage, and the minimum salary threshold will change as the state minimum wage is updated. We know planning across the multi-year implementation and preparing your nonprofit’s workers as well as your systems can be challenging. The following is a list of tools and resources to help you navigate the Washington Overtime Rules.


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