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What constitutes a "living wage" in Georgia?

The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) provides that workers must be paid at least minimum wage and that non-exempt workers receive overtime pay at a rate of one and one-half times their standard rate of pay for all time worked in excess of 40 hours in any workweek. The current federal minimum wage is $7.25/hour. In Georgia, a handful of cities, including Atlanta, have minimum wages that are higher. For City of Atlanta workers, the minimum wage is $13/hour, with plans to increase this to $15/hour over the course of the next two fiscal years.

However, much attention has been given to a different figure - what constitutes a living wage? A living wage is the amount that a worker, whether single, married, with children or without, needs to earn to support a family. This includes food, housing, medical care, transportation, and other essentials. This hourly rate varies but hovers around $12 an hour for a single adult living in the Atlanta area. When children are added to the mix, the hourly wage needed jumps significantly, to around $27 an hour.

While federal wage laws do not address "living wages", they are an important consideration when you consider taking your next job. For more information or if you have any questions about the FLSA or other wage and hour issue, please contact the experienced Atlanta wage and hour lawyers at Buckley Beal, LLP for an immediate consultation.

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Have a question about employment law in Georgia? Contact Buckley Beal online or call (404) 471-3725.

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