On December 29, 2014, Governor Andrew Cuomo signed into law a bill eliminating the requirement under New York's Wage Theft Prevention Act (WTPA) that New York employers must provide annual WTPA notices to their employees. Pursuant to the Governor's signing statement, the elimination of the annual notice requirement went into effect immediately. Accordingly, New York employers need not distribute annual WTPA notices in 2015 or any other subsequent year.
Under the WTPA's now-revised provisions, New York employers were previously required to provide to their employees annual written notification of each employee's rate of pay, overtime pay rate, allowances, and other compensation-related information. These notices had to be distributed to all employees at some point between January 1 and February 1 of each year. As noted above, the newly-enacted amendment to the WTPA now eliminates this annual notice requirement.
It is important to note that while annual WTPA notices are no longer required, employers are still required to provide WTPA notices (i) to all new hires, and (ii) in the event of a reduction in an employee's compensation. Such WTPA notices must feature information including, but not limited to, the following:
- Rate(s) of pay, including overtime rate of pay, where applicable;
- How the employee is paid, i.e., by the hour, shift, day, week, commission, or otherwise;
- The employee's regular payday; and
- Any allowances that the employer plans to take, e.g., tips, meal, and lodging deductions.
The notices must be provided both in English and in the relevant employee's primary language.