Wage Theft Prevention Act

It’s February, and if you’re in New York, that means you must now be compliant with the new Wage Theft Protection Act.

On April 9, 2011, the New York State Wage Theft Prevention Act went into effect, becoming fully active on February 1, 2012.

The Wage Theft Prevention Act gives greater protection to workers and requires employers to provide notification of pay rates and yearly pay notices.

These yearly pay notices must contain certain information including, but not limited to (1) the employee’s rate or rates of pay (including the overtime rate of pay for non-exempt employees); (2) whether the employee will be paid by the hour, shift, day, week, salary, piece, commission or otherwise; (3) whether the employer will claim any allowances as part of the minimum wage (e.g., tip, meal or lodging allowances); and (4) the employer’s regular pay day. Additionally,

  • The written notice must be provided to employees at the time of hire and, on or before February 1st of each subsequent year of the employee’s employment.
  • The written notice must be provided to the employee in English and in the language identified by each employee as his/her primary language.
  • The employee must sign a written notice acknowledging receipt of the same.
  • The written notices provided to the employees must be preserved and maintained by the employer for six years.

Penalty for Non-Compliance
If an employer fails to provide an employee with the above notice within ten business days of the employee’s first day of employment, the employee may be able to recover $50 for each work week during which the violation occurred, or continues to occur, up to a maximum of $2,500 together with attorney’s fees and costs.

Relevant Links
Notice and Acknowledgement of Pay Rate and Payday
Department of Labor Guidelines for Written Notice of Rates of Pay and Regular Payday
Wage Theft Prevention Act Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ).

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