New York Wage Payment Laws
- Frequency of wage payments
- Manner of wage payments
- Direct deposit
- Payment upon separation from employment
- Wage in dispute
- Deductions from wages
- Uniforms, tools, and other equipment necessary for employment
- Pre-hire medical, physical, or drug tests
- Notice of wage reduction
- Statement of wages (pay stubs)
- Record keeping requirements
- Notice requirements
Frequency of Wage Payments
An employer must pay:
- manual workers: weekly and no later than seven calendar days after the end of the week in which the wages were earned, unless the employer has obtained permission from the commission to pay employees less frequently, not to exceed semi-monthly.
- railroad workers: on or before Thursday of each week the wages earned during the seven-day period ending on Tuesday of the preceding week.
- commission salespersons: at least once per month and not later than the last day of the month following the month in which the wages were earned.
- clerical and other workers: not less frequently than semi-monthly, on regular pay days designated in advance by the employer.
Manner of Wage Payments
An employer may pay an employee by:
- check redeemable for full face value without deduction or fee
- direct deposit, only with the employee’s consent
An employer may pay wages by direct deposit, but only with the advance written consent of the employee, except for a bona fide executive, administrative, or professional capacity whose earnings are in excess of nine hundred dollars a week and employees working on a farm not connected with a factory. NY Labor Law, Art. 6, 192
Payment upon Separation from Employment
Employees who are fired, discharged, terminated, or laid off
When an employee is discharged from employment by the employer, the employer must pay the employee all wages due no later than the regular pay day for the pay period in which the discharge occurred. The wages due must be mailed if so request by the employee. NY Labor Law, Art. 6, 191
An employer must notify any employee terminated from employment, in writing and within five (5) days, of the exact date of such termination as well as the exact date of cancellation of employee benefits connected with such termination. In no case shall notice of such termination be provided more than five working days after the date of such termination. NY Labor Law, Art. 6, 195
Employees who quit or resign
New York does not have a law specifically addressing the payment of wages to an employee who quits, however, to ensure compliance with known laws, an employer should pay employee all wages due no later than the regular pay day for the pay period during which the separation from employment occurred.
Employees who are suspended or resigns due to a labor dispute (strike)
New York does not have a law specifically addressing the payment of wages to an employee who leaves employment due to a labor dispute, however, to ensure compliance with known laws, an employer should pay employee all wages due no later than the regular pay day for the pay period during which the separation from employment occurred.
Wages in Dispute
New York does not have any laws requiring an employer to pay an employee wages conceded to be due when involved in a wage dispute with the employee.
Deductions from Wages
New York law does not permit employers to deduct:
- cash shortages,
- inventory shortages,
- loss of or damage to their property,
- required uniforms
- required tools or other items necessary for employment
An employer may deduct wages from an employees paycheck only if:
- it is permitted by state or federal law, NY Labor Law, Art. 6, 193(1)(a);
- the employee has expressly authorized the deduction in writing and the deduction is for, NY Labor Law, Art. 6, 193(1)(b):
- insurance premiums,
- prepaid legal plans,
- pension or health and welfare benefits,
- contributions to charitable organizations,
- purchase made at events sponsored by a charitable organization affiliate with the employer where at least 20 percent of the profits are contributed to the charitable organization,
- U.S. bonds, union dues or assessments,
- union dues or assessments,
- discounts for parking, tokens, fare cards, vouchers, or other items enabling the employee to use mass transit,
- fitness center, health club, or gym dues,
- for employees at hospitals, colleges, or universities only, cafeteria or vending machine purchases made at the employer’s place of business or purchases made a gifts shops operated by the employer,
- pharmacy purchases made at the employer’s place of business,
- tuition, room, board, and fees for pre-school, nursery, primary, secondary, or post-secondary educational institutions,
- day care and before and after-school care expenses,
- for employees at non-profit hospitals and their affiliates, payments for housing provided at no more than market rates,
- similar benefits of the employee, which cannot exceed 10 percent of the employee’s total gross wages or salary for a pay period (See NY Regs., Title 12, Sec. 195.1).
- it is for overpayment of wages due to a mathematical or clerical error of the employer, NY Labor Law, Art. 6, 193(1)(c);
- it is for repayment of salary or wage advances made by the employer, NY Labor Law, Art. 6, 193(1)(d).
A valid collective bargaining agreement may serve as an employee’s written authorization for deductions. NY Labor Law, Art. 6, 193(1)(b)
An employer must notify an employee as soon as practicable before any substantial changes to the deductions from an employee’s wages are made. NY Labor Law, Art. 6, 193(1)(b)
The employee’s written consent to any deduction must be kept on file on the employer’s premises for the duration of the employee’s employment and for six years after the employee’s employment ends.
An employee may revoke his or her written authorization for any deduction at any time and the employer must stop the deduction after such revocation as soon as possible and, in no case, no more than four pay periods or eight weeks after the employee has revoke the deduction, whichever is sooner. This rule does not apply in situations where the employee’s deductions are authorized by a collective bargaining agreement.NY Labor Law, Art. 6, 193(2)(c)
Deductions for purchase made at charitable events, cafeteria, vending machine, and gift shop purchases at hospitals, colleges, or universities, pharmacy purchases at an employer’s place of business, and similar type deductions, are subject to the following limitations:
- the employer must set a maximum aggregate amount an employee may spending in a pay period,
- an employee may set a maximum aggregate amount they will permit to be deducted in a pay period, but such amount may not exceed the maximum aggregate amount set by the employer,
- the employer must enforce the lower of the two maximum aggregate amounts,
- the employee must have access to records detailing the expenditures made by the employee and the amount to be deduct from his or her wages. The employee must be able to access the records and obtain a printed copy of them at no expense.
Uniforms, Tools, and Other Equipment Necessary for Employment
New York does not have any laws prohibiting an employer from requiring an employee to purchase a uniform, tools, or other items necessary for employment.
Pre-hire Medical, Physical, or Drug Tests
New York does not have any laws prohibiting an employer from requiring an applicant or employee to pay the cost of a medical examination or the cost of furnishing any records required by the employer as a condition of employment.
Notice of Wage Reduction
An employer must notify an employee of any change to his or her wage rate before the hours are worked. NY Labor Law, Art. 6, 195
Statement of Wages (Pay Stub)
An employer must furnish each employee with a statement with every payment of wages, listing:
- gross wages,
- deductions, and
- net wages.
Upon the request of an employee, an employer must provide the employee an explanation of how his or her wages were computed.
Record Keeping Requirements
An employer must establish, maintain and preserve for not less than three (3) years payroll records showing:
- the hours worked,
- gross wages,
- deductions, and
- net wages for each employee.
New York employers are required to give all employees at the time they are hired and on or before February 1 of each year written notice of the following:
- the employee’s rate of pay;
- the employee’s overtime rate of pay, if the employee is subject to overtime requirements;
- the basis on which they are paid (per hour, per shift, per week, piece rate, commission, etc.);
- any allowances the employer intends to claim as part of the minimum wage, including tips, meals, and lodging;
- the employee’s regular payday;
- the employer’s name and any names under which the employer does business (DBA);
- the physical address of the employer’s main office or principal place of business and the employer’s mailing address, if different;
- the employer’s telephone number.
The notice must be provided to employees in English and their primary language, if their primary language is not English. NY Labor Law, Art. 6, 195.1
In addition to giving the notice to their employees, employers must obtain written acknowledgment, signed and dated, from their employees that they have received the notice and a copy of the signed and dated notice must be provided to the employees. Employers must retain the signed and dated notice and acknowledgment for six years. NY Labor Law, Art. 6, 195.1
The New York Department of Labor has created templates in English and other languages employers may use to fulfill their notice requirements. See NY DOL Employment Laws/Labor Standards Forms According to the DOL, if it has not provided a template for the primary language of an employee, the employer is only required to provide the employee the notice in English. See NY DOL: Guidelines for Written Notice of Rates of Pay and Regular Payday