NYS Has New Wage Rules—With Corresponding Fines

January 25, 2012

February 1 is an important deadline for employers for the Wage Theft Prevention Act (WTPA), which was enacted last April. Failure to comply could mean fines imposed by the State Labor Department.

Existing rules already required employers to notify employees of their wage rates when they are hired, but the new law requires employers to provide the information in writing, not only to new hires but to all employees by February 1, each year. Employers must receive written acknowledgement from their employees that they have received the information.

According to the law, all employees must be provided the notice including professionals, executives, administrators and others exempt from state overtime requirements must still receive a notice. The new requirement also applies to workers covered by a union contract.

All private sector employers are covered, but employees who work in other states are not covered. Federal, state and local government employers are also not covered, but the Labor Department stresses that charter schools, private schools and not-for-profit corporations are covered, as they are not public entities.

The notice to the employee must contain the following information:

The employee's rate(s) of pay.
The basis of the employee's rate(s) of pay (e.g. by the hour, shift, day, week, salary, piece, commission, or other).
Whether the employer intends to claim allowances as part of the minimum wage, including tip, meal, or lodging allowances, and the amount of those allowances.
The employee's regular pay day designated by the employer in accordance with the frequency of pay requirements in the Labor Law
The name of the employer and any "doing business as" names used by the employer.
The physical address of the employer's main office or principal place of business, and a mailing address if different. The telephone number of the employer.
Any such other information as the commissioner deems material and necessary.
More information is available on the WTPA FAQ page.

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