New Minimum Wage Rates for Employees in Rhode Island

Last year (can you believe it’s already 2018?), we reported that Rhode Island’s minimum wage would be increasing on January 1, 2018, and that the rate would increase again in January of 2019.

Rhode Island’s Department of Labor and Training (DLT) has just released the updated 2018 Minimum Wage notice, along with the state’s other required workplace notices, which include two additional laws. All the notices on the poster have a revision date of 1/2018.

Keep reading to see what’s changing in “The Ocean State.”

What Employers and Employees Need to Know

Minimum Wage Rates for All Employees

The minimum wage is now $10.10 per hour, effective 1/1/18, but the tipped wage has not increased. The current tipped wage of $3.89 remains in effect for 2018.

Employers should be aware that the full minimum wage does not apply to certain individuals.

Full-time students under the age of 19 who work for nonprofit libraries or nonprofit religious, educational, or community service organizations are entitled to 90% of the minimum wage, which is now $9.09 per hour.

Minors who are 14 and 15 years old and work no more than 24 hours in a week are entitled to 75% of the minimum wage, which is now $7.58 per hour.

Healthy & Safe Families and Workplaces Act (New)

Rhode Island’s new sick and safe leave law, which was enacted in September 2017, goes into effect on 7/1/18.

According to the new workplace notice, employees are entitled to use sick and safe leave to take care of their own health and safety needs, as well as the health and safety needs of family members.

The law defines “family member” as a child, parent, spouse, mother-in-law, father-in-law, grandparent, grandchild, domestic partner, sibling, care recipient, or a member of an employee’s household.

One important aspect of the law that employees and employers should be aware of is that leave may or may not be paid, depending on the size of an employer and other factors outlined in the law.

For those seeking more information about this new law, the DLT has provided a phone number (401-462-9243) and a website (


Rhode Island’s Ban-the-Box law has been in effect for a few years, but the state has just now decided to include it on the poster.

The notice states that it is unlawful for employers to include questions on a job application about an applicant’s criminal history; for example, arrest records and criminal charges or convictions.

There are limited exceptions to the Ban-the-Box law. These include law-enforcement agencies and other related jobs. Employers or employees who need clarification about this law may go to the website or call the phone number provided above.

How to Stay in Compliance

If you have not already done so, we encourage you to order our 1-Year Compliance Plan, so that you will automatically receive the updated Rhode Island poster as soon as it is available. And because we provide free poster updates for mandatory changes, no matter how many occur during the 12-month period, you can count on us to keep you in compliance!