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Employers Must Give Notice To New Employees Of Pay Rate In Writing As Of Oct. 26, 2009

MPMM Law - Thursday, October 29, 2009

Note For Employers

New Law Effective October 26, 2009

The Labor Law In New York [Sec. 195(1)]Requires New Employees To Get Written Notice Of Their Pay Rates

Effective October 26, 2009, New York law now requires employers to provide a special notice to new employees about their pay.

Newly hired employees must be given written notice of their pay rate, pay day and, if applicable to the employee, overtime rate of pay. Employers must also obtain a written acknowledgment from employees that the employees have received the notice. See Labor Law §195(1) at the end of this posting.

The law states indicates that the acknowledgment must meet requirements established by the Department of Labor (DOL).

The DOL has now issued notice and acknowledgment forms to complying with Labor Law §195(1), but there are some issues with the form DOL has issued.

The form does not seem to address situations in which commissions or bonuses must be included in the overtime calculation, so the overtime rate cannot be known in advance. It also does not say how to inform employees of their overtime rate if that overtime will fluctuate from week to week

The law seems to indicate that employers must use the form of acknowledgment issued by the DOL, but it does not specifically require use of the exact notification form published by the DOL. If employers must use that form, it would be potentially problematic given these open issues.

A copy of the "Notice and Acknowledgement of Wage Rate and Designated Payday, Hourly Rate Plus Overtime" form can be found at the DOL's website.

Click here to get your new DOL forms and information on the new law.

While there are open issues with the form and its sufficiency that need to be cleared up, employers would be well advised to, at minimum, use the form published by the DOL until there is further guidance or clarification from DOL about changes or updates to the form.

Please confirm with your Human Resources staff that you are complying with the above requirement for all hires brought on after October 26, 2009.

NY Labor Law § 195(1)

§ 195. Notice and record-keeping requirements. Every employer shall: 1. notify his or her employees, in writing, at the time of hiring of the rate of pay and of the regular pay day designated by the employer in accordance with section one hundred ninety-one of this article, and obtain a written acknowledgement from each employee of receipt of this notice. Such acknowledgement shall conform to any requirements established by the commissioner with regard to content and form. For all employees who are eligible for overtime compensation as established in the commissioner's minimum wage orders or otherwise provided by law or regulation, the notice must state the regular hourly rate and overtime rate of pay;