Minimum Wage in Illinois 2022-2025

Off of the Chicago River as the sun lights up the city.
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A state’s minimum wage is the lowest legal hourly rate that an employer can pay full-time or part-time employees.

What Is the Minimum Wage in Illinois?

The current minimum wage in Illinois is $12 per hour for most workers in 2022.

Tipped workers — like waiters and bartenders — can expect a minimum wage of $7.20 per hour from their employer, with the remainder being made up in tips. If the employee doesn’t earn at least $12 per hour of labor when factoring in their tips, the employer must make up the difference to ensure that they earn at least $12 an hour.

What Will Minimum Wage Be In 2023 in Illinois?

On Jan. 1st, 2023, the minimum wage in Illinois will increase to $13 an hour, with a tipped minimum wage of $7.80 an hour. This continues a trend of raising the state’s minimum wage by one dollar each year between 2020 and 2025.

Is Minimum Wage in Illinois $15 an Hour?

While the Prairie State is currently on the road to a $15 minimum wage, residents should not expect this wage to arrive until 2025.

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Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker enacted legislation that puts the state on a path to increase the hourly minimum wage to $15 by 2025. The minimum wage will be increased incrementally each year until it reaches $15 in January of 2025. Tipped employees will also see incremental increases in their hourly wages, eventually reaching $9 per hour in 2025. 

What Is the Minimum Wage in Chicago?

In 2022, the hourly minimum wage in Chicago is $15.40 for businesses with more than 20 employees — or $9.24 for tipped workers. For businesses with 20 or fewer employees, the minimum wage is $14.50 an hour, with a tipped minimum wage of $8.70.

The Chicago minimum wage increases incrementally each year by the lower of 2.5% or the Consumer Price Index.

Which States Have the Highest Minimum Wage?

The current highest minimum wage of any state in the U.S. is in Washington, where minimum wage workers can expect to make at least $14.49 per hour. It is followed by Massachusetts at $14.25, California at $14 and New York at $13.20.

However, even though Washington does have the highest base minimum wage in the country, that doesn’t exactly tell the whole story. Minimum wage workers have the potential to earn $15 an hour in California so long as the company employs 26 or more employees. Businesses that employ fewer than 26 employees are only obligated to pay the state’s base minimum wage, which is $14 per hour. Many cities in California have also instituted higher local minimum wages, many of which are more than $16 per hour.

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Laborers and others who typically earn minimum wage in their line of work, like restaurant staff, should consider that areas with a higher minimum wage than the federal- or state-required minimum usually also have higher costs of living.

In What States Is $15 the Minimum Wage?

In 2023, three states will be increasing their minimum wages to $15 an hour or more: Washington at $15.74, California at $15.50 and Massachusetts at $15 an hour.

Minimum wage workers earn the most per hour if they live in the District of Columbia. Washington D.C.’s minimum wage is $16.10 per hour in 2022, which is more than double the federal minimum wage. It will increase to $16.50 an hour in 2023.

Which States Have the Lowest Minimum Wages?

Technically, the states with the lowest minimum wage are the ones with no minimum wage at all. Five states in the U.S. do not have a minimum wage: South Carolina, Tennessee, Alabama, Mississippi and Louisiana. 

Although these states have not instituted a state minimum wage, the Fair Labor Standards Act requires most employers in the country to pay at least $7.25 per hour. In the case of these five states, federal law overrides state law and dictates that businesses must pay their employees at least $7.25 an hour, even if there is no specific state law in place that requires it. 

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This is also the case in states like Georgia and Wyoming, where legislature has established a state minimum wage below the federal minimum of $7.25.

Final Thoughts

Illinois has a higher minimum wage than many other states, but it may not be enough to justify a move for minimum wage workers. Be sure to calculate housing, food, education and other expenses that you’re likely to incur in the location that you’re moving to in order to get a better idea of whether your moving expenses will be worth your expected wage increase.

All residents of Illinois are entitled to the state minimum wage. If you believe that you are not being paid fairly for your work or in accordance with Illinois state minimum wage standards, you can make a complaint with the Illinois Department of Labor. Keep your paystubs, checks and any other proof that you may have that your employer has been paying you less than the state’s minimum wage per hour. If the Department of Labor finds that your employer has been illegally underpaying you or withholding wages, you could be entitled to have them retroactively paid back to you.


Here are the answers to some common questions about minimum wage in Illinois.
  • How much does McDonald's pay in Illinois in 2022?
    • Every McDonald's operating in Illinois is required to pay employees at least the state's minimum wage of $12 per hour. However, individual franchise locations may have different rules for payment, and a McDonald's employee may earn more than the state minimum wage, depending on their experience and the needs of the branch.
  • How many hours is full-time work in Illinois?
    • In Illinois, full-time work is considered to be 30 hours per week or more. If an employee works an average of 35 hours per seven consecutive days, they will qualify for full-time benefits that the employer is legally required to provide, like access to the company's health insurance plan options, as long as the employee is 19 years old or older.

Amber Barkley contributed to the reporting for this article.

Information is accurate as of Dec. 28, 2022.

Our in-house research team and on-site financial experts work together to create content that’s accurate, impartial, and up to date. We fact-check every single statistic, quote and fact using trusted primary resources to make sure the information we provide is correct. You can learn more about GOBankingRates’ processes and standards in our editorial policy.

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About the Author

Sarah Horvath is a skilled copywriter with more than seven years of experience in B2B and B2C copy. She specializes in financial and investment writing, though she also has experience with fashion and home maintenance.
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