Top 10 States with the Highest Minimum Wage in 2023

Author: Jason Coles

Updated On:

Each year, the minimum wage in the US becomes a national talking point. Typically, before the start of a new year, many people wonder whether or not the federal minimum wage will increase on a national basis.

However, something that is spoken about even more than the federal minimum wage is the minimum wage for each individual state. Is my state going to increase its minimum wage rate this year?

These questions are usually answered in January of each year, with the vast majority of states increasing or releasing a statement regarding their minimum wage situation on January 1.

Most states make their workers and business owners/employers aware of any upcoming changes that are about to go into effect the following year since the minimum wage laws are usually agreed on and signed into law at least a few months before they become effective.

The information you see in this article details the top 10 states with the highest minimum wage rates in 2023. Some states that you see on the list may have certain cities or regions with either higher or lower wage laws than you see here.

However, we have included an additional section at the bottom of the page, detailing the top 5 US cities with the highest minimum wage rates.

Where is the Highest Minimum Wage State in the US?

The minimum wage is the lowest hourly, daily, or monthly wage that businesses may legally pay to employees or workers.

Here are the top 10 highest state minimum wage rates in the United States for 2023. The District of Columbia is not included since it is not a U.S. state.

If it were included, then the District of Columbia would have the highest state minimum wage since its minimum wage rate is $16.50 per hour.

As you can see, the graphic below displays the top 10 states with the highest minimum wage rates in 2023:

Here’s the list of the top 10 highest minimum wage states in 2023 with each state’s living wage included too:

  1. Washington State – Currently sitting at $15.74 per hour, the state with the highest minimum wage in 2023 is Washington. The living wage in Washington is $19.58.
  2. California – A close second place goes to California, with a 2023 minimum wage of $15.50 per hour. The living wage in California is $21.24.
  3. Massachusetts – Third place goes to Massachusetts, with a minimum wage of $15.00 per hour. The living wage for Massachusetts is $21.35.
  4. New York – $14.20 per hour is the New York minimum wage, making it to fourth place. The living wage in New York is $21.35.
  5. New Jersey – This is the first year New Jersey has made it into the top 5, sitting at $14.13. The living wage for New Jersey is $18.71.
  6. Connecticut – After a mid-year increase, the Connecticut minimum wage sits at $14.00 per hour and clinched the sixth spot on the list. The living wage in Connecticut is $17.76.
  7. Arizona – The Grand Canyon State’s minimum wage increased to $13.85 per hour in 2023. Arizona’s living wage is $17.78.
  8. Maine – The minimum wage in Maine is $13.80 per hour, making it the 8th highest. Maine’s living wage is $16.53.
  9. Colorado – In 2023, the Colorado minimum wage sits at $13.65 per hour. The living wage for Colorado is $20.25.
  10. Oregon – $13.50 per hour is the current minimum wage in Oregon, making it the 10th highest on our list. The living wage for Oregon is $21.85.

There are many variables when it comes to the minimum wage, most states generate a unique wage via the consumer price index, measuring the cost of living, house prices, and inflation, which is usually revised, or at least revisited annually.

To find out more information regarding the minimum wage of all 50 states, check out our US minimum wage by state page.

The table below reflects the top 10 highest minimum wage states in 2023.

PositionState2023 Minimum Wage Rate
1stWashington State$15.74
4thNew York$14.20
5thNew Jersey$14.13

Highest Minimum Wage City in the US

Despite statewide minimum wage rates being the reference for what people are entitled to be paid in general for each state, there are some exemptions for those working in certain US cities.

So, below we have listed the top 5 highest minimum wage city rates in the US:

  • Seattle, WA Minimum Wage: $18.69 per hour
  • Denver, CO Minimum Wage: $17.29 per hour
  • Spokane, WA Minimum Wage: $15.74 per hour
  • Sacramento, CA Minimum Wage: $15.50 per hour
  • Stockton, CA Minimum Wage: $15.50 per hour
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Jason Coles

Jason Coles is the Founder of Foreign USA and its Chief Content Writer and Editor. Recognized as a prolific business plan writer by many prominent immigration attorneys in the U.S., Jason has written over 1,280 business plans over the past 17+ years for start-ups looking to establish and expand their footprint in the United States.