New York Pay Frequency Requirements: What Companies Should Know

In New York State, businesses need to ensure they pay employees properly and on-time in order to maintain compliance with New York Pay Schedule Requirements. 

Here is everything businesses need to know. 

When processing payroll in New York businesses need to ensure that they pay employees on time in order to process New York payroll properly and compliantly. 

New York Pay Frequency

Under New York State Frequency of Pay Law, businesses must meet certain requirements when creating a pay schedule for employees. The law applies to all private sector employers, and most employees working in New York State. 

How Often Do Manual Workers Need to be Paid in New York?

Manual workers in the state of New York must be paid weekly. 

This weekly payment must be made no later than seven calendar days after the end of the week in which the wages were earned. 

What is a Manual Worker?

A manual worker is considered a "mechanic, workingman, or laborer" in New York. More specifically, the state typically views any employees who spend more than 25% of working time engaged in “physical labor” as manual workers. 

Some other examples of a manual worker include: 

  • Retail workers
  • Hospitality and food service workers
  • Daycare providers

Businesses should note that the definition of a manual worker in New York State has no fixed list of professions covered by the law. Businesses having trouble determining if an employee is a manual worker should reach out to a New York HR Outsourcing Company for help.


Exemption for Manual Workers in the Non-Profit Industry

In the case of non-profit companies, manual workers may not be paid less frequently than semi-monthly. 

Exemption for Manual Workers in the Railroad Industry

Manual workers in the railroad industry need to be paid on or before Thursday of each week. This needs to include wages earned during the seven-day period ending on the Tuesday of the preceding week. 

What is a Railroad Worker?

A railroad worker is considered any person employed by an employer who operates a steam, electric, or diesel surface railroad or is engaged in the sleeping car business. Important to note is that this does not include anyone employee in an executive capacity or for governmental agencies. 

How Often Do Commission Salespersons Need to be Paid in New York?

Employers of commission salespersons must pay such employees in accordance with any agreed terms in the commission agreement. 

However, employers still need to ensure that such workers are paid no less than once per month, and no later than the last day of the month following the month / period in which the wages were earned.

If wages are substantial, additional compensation earned, including extra or incentive earnings, may be paid less frequently than once a month.

What is a Commission Salesperson?

A commission salesperson is considered to be any employee who: 

  • Has a primary duty of selling goods, wares, merchandise, services, real estate, securities, insurance or any article or thing
  • Receives earnings based solely or partly on commissions

This does not apply to an employee whose principal duties are of a supervisory, managerial, executive, or administrative nature.

How Often Do Clerical and Other Non-Manual Workers Need to be Paid in New York?

For clerical and other non-manual workers in the state, employers must set up a pay schedule of at least twice per month (semi-monthly). 

What is a Clerical or Other Non-Manual Worker?

This includes any workers that do not fall into any of the other previously mentioned categories. 

Exceptions to New York Frequency of Pay Law

New York Pay Frequency does not apply to employees classified as executive, administrative, or professional employees who also earn over $900 per week. Important to note is that an employee's exemption alone under New York Overtime Law does not exempt them from New York Pay Frequency. While the criteria for the duties test is the same, the salary threshold requirement is not. 

Additionally, federal, state, and local government employers are also exempt from this law. 

Large Employer Exemptions

Large companies who otherwise would be required to pay employees weekly may apply to pay employees bi-weekly by filling out the Application for Authorization to Pay Manual Workers Less Frequently Than Weekly

In order to apply, a large business must: 

  • Have had an average of 1,000 employees in New York for the three years preceding the application
  • Have had  an average of 3,000 out-of-state employees for the three years preceding the application and an average of 1,000 employees in New York for the year preceding the application

The New York Department of Labor considered a number of factors for businesses that apply, but those that do and are approved may pay employees on a bi-weekly schedule.

Get Help With New York Pay Frequency Requirements

The last thing you want when processing payroll in New York is to make a mistake that can lead to New York fines, penalties, legal trouble, and possible employee-employer confrontation. 

In order to ensure that employees are paid properly and on time, there is no better answer than a New York Payroll Software Solution. With a New York Payroll Company at your back, you can feel confident in your backend office operations, and no longer worry about employees being paid properly and accurately.

To get started with finding a New York payroll provider, contact us today.

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