United States: Illinois Governor Signs Bill Raising The Statewide Minimum Wage To $15 Per Hour

Last Updated: February 27 2019
Article by Kathryn Siegel

On February 19, 2019, Governor JB Pritzker signed into law the "Lifting Up Illinois Working Families Act," which raises the state's minimum wage, in increments, to $15 per hour by 2025.1 With the enactment of this bill, Illinois has become the fifth state to pass a statewide increase in the minimum wage to $15 per hour, joining California, New Jersey,2 New York, and Massachusetts.3

Increases for Regular and Youth Wage

Under SB 1, the minimum wage is scheduled to increase with a series of hourly rate adjustments over the next five years to achieve the $15 hourly pay rate. For workers at least 18 years old, hourly rates will go from $8.25 to $9.25 per hour, beginning on January 1, 2020. After six months, the hourly minimum will increase to $10 per hour through the end of 2020. Thereafter, the minimum wage will go up one dollar per hour the first day of each year until it reaches $15 per hour on January 1, 2025.

For employees under the age of 18 working more than 650 hours in a calendar year, SB 1 mandates a lower rate of hourly wage increases. In January, 2020, the minimum hourly wage will be $8, increasing to $8.50 in January 2021, $9.25 in January 2022, and $10.50 in January 2023. On January 1, 2024, the youth minimum wage will jump to $12 per hour and then finally land at $13 per hour in January 2025.  Below is a summary of the minimum wage increases mandated by SB 1:


Regular Minimum Wage

Youth Wage

January 1, 2020



July 1, 2020



January 1, 2021



January 1, 2022



January 1, 2023



January 1, 2024



January 1, 2025



Employers in Chicago are already familiar with minimum wage step increases. On December 2, 2014, the city passed a minimum wage ordinance that raises the minimum wage for Chicago workers to $13 per hour by July 1, 2019, with increases tied to the Consumer Price Index thereafter.4 Therefore, employers with employees working in Chicago should be mindful of both sets of requirements. 

Tax Credits

The bill also includes tax credits to help smaller businesses offset increased wages. Employers with 50 or fewer employees will be able to claim a tax credit corresponding to 25% of the increased cost of wages paid from January 1, 2020 through December 31, 2020. This tax credit is then phased out over the course of the scheduled wage increases. It will reduce to 21% of the increased cost of wages in 2021, down to 17% in 2022, to 13% in 2023, then to 9% in 2024, and finally to 5% in 2025. The 5% credit will still be available for the year of 2026 for those employers with more than five employees and through 2027 for employers with no more than five workers.

Not all small businesses will be able to claim this tax credit. A business will not be able to claim the credit if its total average wages for employees earning less than $55,000 per year decreased when compared to the same period in the previous year. The tax credit is also limited to wages for employees who worked 90 or more consecutive days during the year.5


SB 1 also strengthens the enforcement provisions for violations of the minimum wage rules. For example, if employees prevail in a claim for recovery of lost wages under the minimum wage law, they will be entitled to treble the amount of corresponding underpayments as damages, in addition to court costs and attorney's fees. The bill also adds new fines for employers that recklessly, willfully or repeatedly disregard the wage requirements. Employers not in compliance could be liable for a fine of $1,500, payable to the Illinois Department of Labor Wage Theft Enforcement Fund.6 Another penalty added in SB 1 will levy a $100 per employee fine against any employer that did not keep proper payroll records, also payable to the Illinois Wage Theft Enforcement Fund. 

Increasing the minimum wage was one of Governor Pritzker's campaign promises. He confirmed his enthusiastic support for the measure in a statement on February 14, 2019, with a promise to sign the bill "in days to come."7

Employers with employees working in Illinois should consider the impact of SB 1 on their payroll and budget, and plan for any changes to recordkeeping it may require.


S.B. 0001, 101st Gen. Assemb. (IL 2019).

See Russell McEwan and Emily David, New Jersey Employers Should Expect Minimum Wage Hike to $15, Littler ASAP (Jan. 28, 2019).

See Chris Kaczmarek and Alice Kokodis, Massachusetts Increases Minimum Wage, Eliminates Premium Pay For Sunday Work, And Enacts New Paid Leave Program, Littler ASAP (June 29, 2018).

See  Darren Mungerson, Chicago Minimum Wage Ordinance Goes Into Effect July 1, 2015, Littler ASAP (July 1, 2015).

5 Under the bill, however, "Such credits may accrue during that 90-day period and be claimed against payments under this Section for future reporting periods after the employee has worked for the employer at least 90 consecutive days."

6 The language of the bill is unclear on whether the fine is per year or per employee.

7 IL Gov. Press Release, Gov. Pritzker Applauds Passage of $15 Minimum Wage, (Feb. 14, 2019).

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

To print this article, all you need is to be registered on Mondaq.com.

Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.

Similar Articles
Relevancy Powered by MondaqAI
In association with
Related Topics
Similar Articles
Relevancy Powered by MondaqAI
Related Articles
Related Video
Up-coming Events Search
Font Size:
Mondaq on Twitter
Mondaq Free Registration
Gain access to Mondaq global archive of over 375,000 articles covering 200 countries with a personalised News Alert and automatic login on this device.
Mondaq News Alert (some suggested topics and region)
Select Topics
Registration (please scroll down to set your data preferences)

Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including your content preferences, for three primary purposes (full details of Mondaq’s use of your personal data can be found in our Privacy and Cookies Notice):

  • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting to show content ("Content") relevant to your interests.
  • To enable features such as password reminder, news alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
  • To produce demographic feedback for our content providers ("Contributors") who contribute Content for free for your use.

Mondaq hopes that our registered users will support us in maintaining our free to view business model by consenting to our use of your personal data as described below.

Mondaq has a "free to view" business model. Our services are paid for by Contributors in exchange for Mondaq providing them with access to information about who accesses their content. Once personal data is transferred to our Contributors they become a data controller of this personal data. They use it to measure the response that their articles are receiving, as a form of market research. They may also use it to provide Mondaq users with information about their products and services.

Details of each Contributor to which your personal data will be transferred is clearly stated within the Content that you access. For full details of how this Contributor will use your personal data, you should review the Contributor’s own Privacy Notice.

Please indicate your preference below:

Yes, I am happy to support Mondaq in maintaining its free to view business model by agreeing to allow Mondaq to share my personal data with Contributors whose Content I access
No, I do not want Mondaq to share my personal data with Contributors

Also please let us know whether you are happy to receive communications promoting products and services offered by Mondaq:

Yes, I am happy to received promotional communications from Mondaq
No, please do not send me promotional communications from Mondaq
Terms & Conditions

Mondaq.com (the Website) is owned and managed by Mondaq Ltd (Mondaq). Mondaq grants you a non-exclusive, revocable licence to access the Website and associated services, such as the Mondaq News Alerts (Services), subject to and in consideration of your compliance with the following terms and conditions of use (Terms). Your use of the Website and/or Services constitutes your agreement to the Terms. Mondaq may terminate your use of the Website and Services if you are in breach of these Terms or if Mondaq decides to terminate the licence granted hereunder for any reason whatsoever.

Use of www.mondaq.com

To Use Mondaq.com you must be: eighteen (18) years old or over; legally capable of entering into binding contracts; and not in any way prohibited by the applicable law to enter into these Terms in the jurisdiction which you are currently located.

You may use the Website as an unregistered user, however, you are required to register as a user if you wish to read the full text of the Content or to receive the Services.

You may not modify, publish, transmit, transfer or sell, reproduce, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, link, display, or in any way exploit any of the Content, in whole or in part, except as expressly permitted in these Terms or with the prior written consent of Mondaq. You may not use electronic or other means to extract details or information from the Content. Nor shall you extract information about users or Contributors in order to offer them any services or products.

In your use of the Website and/or Services you shall: comply with all applicable laws, regulations, directives and legislations which apply to your Use of the Website and/or Services in whatever country you are physically located including without limitation any and all consumer law, export control laws and regulations; provide to us true, correct and accurate information and promptly inform us in the event that any information that you have provided to us changes or becomes inaccurate; notify Mondaq immediately of any circumstances where you have reason to believe that any Intellectual Property Rights or any other rights of any third party may have been infringed; co-operate with reasonable security or other checks or requests for information made by Mondaq from time to time; and at all times be fully liable for the breach of any of these Terms by a third party using your login details to access the Website and/or Services

however, you shall not: do anything likely to impair, interfere with or damage or cause harm or distress to any persons, or the network; do anything that will infringe any Intellectual Property Rights or other rights of Mondaq or any third party; or use the Website, Services and/or Content otherwise than in accordance with these Terms; use any trade marks or service marks of Mondaq or the Contributors, or do anything which may be seen to take unfair advantage of the reputation and goodwill of Mondaq or the Contributors, or the Website, Services and/or Content.

Mondaq reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to take any action that it deems necessary and appropriate in the event it considers that there is a breach or threatened breach of the Terms.

Mondaq’s Rights and Obligations

Unless otherwise expressly set out to the contrary, nothing in these Terms shall serve to transfer from Mondaq to you, any Intellectual Property Rights owned by and/or licensed to Mondaq and all rights, title and interest in and to such Intellectual Property Rights will remain exclusively with Mondaq and/or its licensors.

Mondaq shall use its reasonable endeavours to make the Website and Services available to you at all times, but we cannot guarantee an uninterrupted and fault free service.

Mondaq reserves the right to make changes to the services and/or the Website or part thereof, from time to time, and we may add, remove, modify and/or vary any elements of features and functionalities of the Website or the services.

Mondaq also reserves the right from time to time to monitor your Use of the Website and/or services.


The Content is general information only. It is not intended to constitute legal advice or seek to be the complete and comprehensive statement of the law, nor is it intended to address your specific requirements or provide advice on which reliance should be placed. Mondaq and/or its Contributors and other suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the information contained in the Content for any purpose. All Content provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Mondaq and/or its Contributors and other suppliers hereby exclude and disclaim all representations, warranties or guarantees with regard to the Content, including all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. To the maximum extent permitted by law, Mondaq expressly excludes all representations, warranties, obligations, and liabilities arising out of or in connection with all Content. In no event shall Mondaq and/or its respective suppliers be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use of the Content or performance of Mondaq’s Services.


Mondaq may alter or amend these Terms by amending them on the Website. By continuing to Use the Services and/or the Website after such amendment, you will be deemed to have accepted any amendment to these Terms.

These Terms shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of England and Wales and you irrevocably submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of the courts of England and Wales to settle any dispute which may arise out of or in connection with these Terms. If you live outside the United Kingdom, English law shall apply only to the extent that English law shall not deprive you of any legal protection accorded in accordance with the law of the place where you are habitually resident ("Local Law"). In the event English law deprives you of any legal protection which is accorded to you under Local Law, then these terms shall be governed by Local Law and any dispute or claim arising out of or in connection with these Terms shall be subject to the non-exclusive jurisdiction of the courts where you are habitually resident.

You may print and keep a copy of these Terms, which form the entire agreement between you and Mondaq and supersede any other communications or advertising in respect of the Service and/or the Website.

No delay in exercising or non-exercise by you and/or Mondaq of any of its rights under or in connection with these Terms shall operate as a waiver or release of each of your or Mondaq’s right. Rather, any such waiver or release must be specifically granted in writing signed by the party granting it.

If any part of these Terms is held unenforceable, that part shall be enforced to the maximum extent permissible so as to give effect to the intent of the parties, and the Terms shall continue in full force and effect.

Mondaq shall not incur any liability to you on account of any loss or damage resulting from any delay or failure to perform all or any part of these Terms if such delay or failure is caused, in whole or in part, by events, occurrences, or causes beyond the control of Mondaq. Such events, occurrences or causes will include, without limitation, acts of God, strikes, lockouts, server and network failure, riots, acts of war, earthquakes, fire and explosions.

By clicking Register you state you have read and agree to our Terms and Conditions