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Labor & Employment Alert >> New York State Just Confirmed Increase of State Exempt Minimum Salary Threshold Effective December 31, 2016

December 29, 2016

Yesterday, December 28, 2016, New York State adopted new regulations, effective December 31,2016, which increase the minimum salary employers will have to pay to administrative and executive employees who are exempt from (ineligible for) overtime pay under New York State wage and hour law.

The new regulations mean a significant jump from the current minimum salary threshold of $675 per week ($35,100 annually). Under the new regulations, the new minimum exempt salary in New York will vary based on employer size and geographic location within New York State. 

Click here to view a chart outlining the new salary thresholds.

Notably, the increases implemented by New York State effective December 31, 2016 are lower than the proposed increases to the FLSA, which a federal judge in Texas recently blocked. Thus, employers who made salary changes or reclassified employees in anticipation of the proposed federal overtime rules should not have to make any immediate changes.  Employers must remain mindful, however, of subsequent increases to the exempt salary minimums in New York, which will take place on an annual basis through December 31, 2021, and which will eventually exceed the proposed increased federal threshold.  

Employers that did not review their employee population in anticipation of the federal increases, or that did not make any changes to salary levels, should immediately determine whether any salaried employees who currently earn less than the new salary threshold must now receive a base salary raise or be reclassified as overtime-eligible.  Employers should be mindful that any employees who remain exempt must still meet the duties and responsibilities criteria, in addition to the increased salary threshold.