i have a hair salon, and have employees that get paid 50% commission, we deduct the taxes and give them a check per week, they only get paid by commission witch is $13 dlls per hair cut and we don't pay them hourly, they are required to be there at least 4 to 5 days a week and 5 to 6 hrs daily, i didn't know that i have to pay them at least the minimum wage
when they didn't make enough in that week, for example we have 8 hair stations and we have 7 hairdressers waiting for customer there has been weeks where it was really slow and they made like 50dlls in that week working 5 hrs daily and they would be allow to leave if it was slow, but i wasn't aware of this rule of paying minimum wage even if they were commission base only, most of them are gone and i only have 2 that have been with us since we open 9 months ago, it was been hard on me as the rent is high and we really haven't make any profit yet, we barely make it to pay all the bills and i was afraid that this 2 employees might complain of not making at least the minimum wage, and stay there just waiting for customers without getting paid, i always told them that I'm flexible and they can leave if it is slow but it was them the ones to wanted to stay to see if more customers will walk it, now that i know i want to pay them
by commission and if they made less than the minimum wage pay the difference and if they made more with commission that will be good, but I'm afraid that they might find out that i was not doing it right by been ignorant and want to get retroactive pay, for the last 9 months that they didn't make at least the minimum wage, and i would be liable to pay them for all that time witch i don't have the money as I'm struggling with this business what could happen, could a be in trouble, we have a good relationship and i don't think they will complain, but what about the others in the future if they realize that they didn't make enough before, how should i handle it, now i will pay them witch ever is grater, but I'm so sad that i was ignorant in the current law. and i want to do the right thing what is your advice? is it legitimate that i paid them only commission even when there were weeks that they only made $50 to $130 a week witch was less than the minimum wage?