What MMA Members Need to Know About the Court’s Ruling on Minimum Wage/Paid Sick Leave Laws

You likely have questions regarding a recent decision by the Michigan Court of Claims that ruled declared Michigan’s Improved Workforce Opportunity Wage Act (a.k.a. the Minimum Wage law) and the Earned Sick Time Act (a.k.a. the Paid Sick Leave law) as unconstitutional. These Acts were originally 2018 ballot initiatives which the Legislature adopted and then amended in an effort to ease the burden the original ballot initiatives would have placed on employers (see Dave Worthams’ committee memo for details).

MMA spearheaded the efforts to support the work of the Legislature in 2018 and joined with other statewide associations in writing an amicus brief for the Supreme Court regarding the “adopt and amend” strategies constitutionality. The Supreme Court, at the time, declined to review the matter. Shortly thereafter, a coalition of progressive groups filed Mothering Justice, et al v. Dana Nessel in the Court of Claims.

The Court of Claims decision to now declare the acts unconstitutional severely damages Michigan’s business climate. The decision is expected to be stayed while an appeal is filed. MMA is working with other business groups to craft a strategy to find a solution that counters the pall this casts over Michigan’s economy.

Impact on MMA Members:

Until a stay is issued by the Court, MMA members will need to comply with the minimum wage under the original law as it was passed prior to amendment. The minimum wage will jump to $12/hour and will then be adjusted upward by the rate of inflation each year thereafter. Further, paid leave time for employers will increase to one hour given for every 30 hours worked up to a minimum benefit level of 72 hours each year regardless of the size of the employer.

MMA will continue to monitor this situation, keep you apprised on our discussions with other interested parties, and continue our discussions with the Department of Labor and Economic Development (LEO) as they share information on how they will administer the policy impacts of this decision.

Contact David Q. Worthams

David Q. WorthamsDirector of Employment Policy
Call 517-487-8511