On September 21, 2021, Puerto Rico Governor Pedro Pierluisi signed into law an Act that raises the hourly minimum wage from $7.25 to $8.50. Prior to this increase, the minimum wage in Puerto Rico had not been modified since 2009. The Act and its new base pay will enter into effect on January 1, 2022.
The increase to the minimum wage, however, does not stop there. The Act also provides another automatic increase to $9.50 per hour starting on July 1, 2023. A year after that, on July 1, 2024, employers and employees can expect another increase up to $10.50 per hour, but this final increase is subject to the approval of the newly created Minimum Wage Evaluation Committee (WEC). The WEC, which is part of the Puerto Rico Department of Labor and Human Resources, has the authority to issue a mandatory decree varying the amount of the last increase to the minimum wage.
During the signing of the legislative measure, Governor Pedro Pierluisi declared, "[f]or a long time thousands of workers on our island have not received an increase in the minimum wage, but they have had an increase in the cost of living for these past 12 years. A payment of $7.25 an hour is no longer sustainable to live in Puerto Rico, so it was time to do justice to the working class."