Seyfarth Synopsis: The minimum wage will increase for New Jersey employers effective January 1, 2020. It is also that time of year when we remind our clients with operations in New Jersey of their obligation to distribute certain required notices.

Minimum Wage 2020

The minimum wage in New Jersey for most employers will increase to $11.00 an hour effective January 1, 2020. For seasonal and small employers (fewer than six employees), the minimum wage will increase to $10.30 an hour. We previously wrote about these scheduled increases here. The schedule of increases can also be found here.

Also, as of January 1, 2020, New Jersey establishes a “training wage,” such that “beginning on January 1, 2020, workers enrolled in a qualified training program would begin to be paid a “training wage” equal to at least 90 percent of the minimum wage at the time, for up to the employee’s first 120 hours. Importantly, this rate may only be used where the employer utilizes “an established employer on the job or other training program” meeting certain standards, where the trainee does not displace another employee, and where it is the employer’s intent at the time of hire to retain the employee beyond the training period.

Employers should also be sure to post the updated minimum wage poster, which can be accessed here.

CEPA Notice

Employers with 10 or more employees, regardless of whether those employees work in New Jersey or outside the state, must distribute annually (not merely post) the required notice under the Conscientious Employee Protection Act (CEPA). The CEPA Notice, which must be provided in both English and Spanish to New Jersey employees, can be accessed here. Please be sure to fill out the “Contact Information” section prior to distribution. This distribution may take the form of email, provided the subject employees typically have access to email in the course of their job duties. Otherwise, hardcopy distribution is required.

Gender Equity Notice

On or before December 31, employers with 50 or more employees, regardless of whether those employees work in New Jersey or outside the state, must provide employees with a Gender Equity Notice, which can be accessed here.

The Gender Equity Notice can be distributed to New Jersey employees by:

  • email;
  • printed material “including, but not limited to, a pay check insert, brochure or similar informational packet provided to new hires, an attachment to an employee manual or policy book; or flyer distributed at an employee meeting”; or
  • an internet or intranet website “if the site is for the exclusive use of all workers, can be accessed by all workers, and the employer provides notice to the workers of its posting.”

Importantly, the Gender Equity Notice must be accompanied by an acknowledgment of receipt (signed or e-verified) by the employee, which must be returned within 30 days of receipt of the Notice. The law also requires that the acknowledgement be signed every time that the Notice is distributed. While CEPA does not expressly require such a signed acknowledgement, employers may wish to consider it.

Happy Holidays and Happy New Year!