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Top Compliance Issues New York Employers Should Know About

Paying the correct wage

Higher minimum salary thresholds for some exempt employees

New York State has higher minimums salary thresholds for administrative and executive exempt employees, and different parts of the state have different salary minimums to qualify under these exemptions.

Meeting the salary threshold does not automatically make an employee “exempt” from the overtime provisions of the state wage and hour law. A primary job duties test must also be met.

Most exempt employees will fit into one of the following three exemption categories: executive, administrative and professional, each with its own unique set of duties requirements that must be met in addition to meeting the salary threshold. The executive and administrative categories have the higher than federal minimums. 

Provided the duties tests are met, on Dec. 31, 2019, large employers (11 or more employees) in New York City will continue to pay a minimum of $58,500 dollars annually. New York City small employers (10 or fewer employees) will see an increase to $58,500 from $52,650 dollars annually.  

Also, as of Dec. 31, Nassau, Suffolk and Westchester counties will require the minimum salary requirement to increase to $50,700, from $46,800 dollars annually. Likewise, all other New York State counties will increase to $46,020 in 2019 from $43,264. No further increases to the minimum salary requirements for these two exemptions have been announced.

Tiered minimum wage

New York also has tiered minimum wage across the state. Much like the exemption thresholds for Administrative and Executive Employee, these tiers were last increased at the end of last year.

In New York City, the minimum is $13.50 per hour for businesses with 10 or fewer employees, and $15.00 per hour for businesses with 11 or more employees. In Nassau, Suffolk and Westchester counties, the minimum wage is $12 per hour, increasing to $13, $14 and $15 on Dec. 31, 2019, 2020 and 2021, respectively. In the remainder of the state, the minimum is $11.10 per hour increasing to $11.80 on Dec. 31 of this year and $12.50 in 2020. 

There are different hourly rates for workers in the fast food industry and those who receive tips. 

Read more -- on equal pay, mandatory arbitration for sexual harassment and other harassment claims here as published in the Business Journals.