Wage Theft Prevention Act in New York and California: Effective January 1, 2012

On January 1, 2012, wage-theft legislation went into effect in both California and New York, two of the nation’s three most populous states. The new laws require employers to provide employees with a standard set of information regarding their employment conditions. For your reference, here’s a roundup of recent legal commentary and analysis on those laws:


Labor Commissioner Publishes Template for Employer – Required Notice to California New Hires (Davis Wright Tremaine LLP)

“California’s new Wage Theft Protection Act, which took effect Jan. 1, 2012, requires employers (except the government) to provide written notice of certain information to every newly-hired non-exempt employee excluding those covered by union contracts that meet certain criteria.” Read more»

“Wage Theft Prevention Act” Takes Effect January 1, 2012 (Fisher & Phillips LLP)

“The WTPA requires that employers provide written notice to employees at the time of hiring regarding: 1) rates of pay and the basis for compensation; 2) any credits or “allowances” taken against the minimum wage; 3) the regular pay day; 4) the name of the employer; 5) physical address of main office or principle place of business; 6) the telephone number of the employer; 7) the name, address, and telephone number of the employer’s workers’ compensation carrier; and 8) ‘any other information the Labor Commissioner deems material and necessary.’” Read more»

California Wage Theft Prevention Act Takes Effect January 1, 2012 (Morgan Lewis)

“The Act … also increases the penalties for nonpayment of all wages due, including overtime premiums and minimum wage for all hours worked.” Read more»

Act Now Advisory: California Labor Commissioner Releases FAQs and Notice Template to Comply with the California Wage Theft Prevention Act (Epstein Becker & Green, P.C.)

“The Division of Labor Standards Enforcement has now posted a notice template and Frequently Asked Questions to its website in order to provide guidance to employers with respect to [California’s Wage Theft Prevention Act of 2011] compliance.” Read more»

California’s New Wage Disclosure Notice and the Wage Theft Prevention Act of 2011 (Littler)

“The wage notice law provides no specific civil penalty [for noncompliance]. Hence, the default penalties of the Private Attorneys General Act apply… a civil penalty of one hundred dollars ($100) for each aggrieved employee per pay period for the initial violation and two hundred dollars ($200) for each aggrieved employee per pay period for each subsequent violation.” Read more»

Wage Notice Requirement Effective January 1, 2012: Labor Commissioner Issues Controversial Template (Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati)

“Employers have raised concerns about the following issues, among many others: the requirement that the employer identify ‘any other business or entity’ that the company uses to ‘hire employees or administer wages or benefits.’ Employers with multiple benefit providers are concerned about the burden of listing all providers.” Read more»

New York

Employers Only Have Until January 31st To Notify Their Employees Of Wage Rates And Terms Of Pay (Abrams, Fensterman, Fensterman, Eisman, Greenberg, Formato & Einiger LLP)

“As a result of the Wage Theft Prevention Act enacted last year, all private sector employers in New York must have each of their employees sign an acknowledgement of wage rate between January 1st and February 1st of each year, beginning in 2012.” Read more»

Don’t Forget the Annual Notice Requirements Under the New York Wage Theft Protection Act (Lowenstein Sandler PC)

“… the Act applies to all New York employers and sets forth new-hire notification requirements, imposes an annual notification requirement, and modifies the information to be included on pay stubs.” Read more»

New York’s Wage Theft Prevention Act Annual Notice Requirement (Loeb & Loeb LLP)

“… failure to provide the annual notices required by the WTPA may subject the employer to various penalties and damages, including damages of $50 per week for each employee to whom a notice was not provided, plus costs and attorneys’ fees.” Read more»

• First Notices Under New York’s Wage Theft Prevention Act Due February 1, 2012 (Ropes & Gray LLP)

“Note that the WTPA also requires that before an employer decreases an employee’s rate of pay, the employer must provide the employee with written notice of the change.” Read more»

• The Time is Now: Wage Theft Prevention Act Compliance Tips (Ruskin Moscou Faltischek)

“Employers may distribute the notices by email but there needs to be a system where the worker can acknowledge the receipt of the notice and print out a copy. Additionally, the Department of Labor advises that employers need to retain hard copies of original signatures for the required 6 years.” Read more»

The First Wage Theft Prevention Act Annual Notices Are Due By February 1, 2012 (Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton LLP)

“… the notices must be provided to employees in English, as well as in their primary language. Currently, the New York State Department of Labor has published model pay notices in English, Chinese, Haitian Creole, Korean, Polish, Russian, and Spanish.” Read more»

Don’t Forget to Ring in the New Year with New York State’s Newest Employee “Notification” Requirement (Constangy, Brooks & Smith, LLP)

“This annual notice requirement is not a one-time event. Employers must remember to distribute such notices every year between January 1 and February 1, even if the information has not changed from the prior year. The Act further requires that the notices be kept by the employer for six years and available for inspection by the Department of Labor.” Read more»

NY Employers MUST Send Annual Wage Rate Notices to All Employees in January! (White & Case LLP)

“… employers must notify employees in writing of any changes to the information set forth in the wage notices, at least seven calendar days prior to the time of such changes (unless such changes are reflected in the wage payment statements provided with every payment of wages).” Read more»


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