New minimum wage

Under a federal law passed in late May, the U.S. federal minimum wage will rise in three annual 70-cent steps beginning on July 24, 2007, when it increases from $5.15 to $5.85 an hour. The law also provides for what is called a 'tip credit' against the wages paid to tipped employees, meaning that tipped employees can be paid less than the minimum wage under a specific set of standards and rules.

Many states and even some cities have their own minimum wage laws. Some provide for higher minimum wages than the federal law. Click here to see a chart of the updated minimum wages for each state.