New York State Minimum Wage Laws Across The State

New York State Minimum Wage Laws Across The State

New York State has 14 minimum wages across the state. It is the most complicated state for employers to stay compliant with the labor laws.

Wages break into a geographical location and the size of the employer. It also changes across industries and by employee type.

This article covers the types of minimum wages for an industry, geographical location, and employer size.

Employers in New York must track the wages if they have employees who work in various regions. New York minimum wage changed on December 31, 2017. It changes again on December 31, 2018.

Understanding Minimum Cash Wages

Minimum cash wages refer to the employer’s portion of the minimum wage that employees must be paid. According to federal law, tipped employees must still make $7.25 an hour, but as much as $5.12 of their minimum wage can be earned through tips.

However, even if an employee makes more than $5.12 an hour in tips, only $5.12 can be counted toward their minimum wages. This means that the minimum cash wage that an employer must pay is $2.13.

It is important to note that it’s a minimum, not maximum cash wage. If the employee does not earn at least $5.12 in tips per hour, the employer must make up the rest of their wages to ensure that their minimum wage is at least $7.25.

Many states also have a minimum cash wage that is used in the same way. New York State also provides a maximum tip credit that employers can use to pay a lower minimum cash wage.

Fast Food Workers Minimum Wage in New York City

In 2017, fast food workers in NYC had a minimum wage of $12.00.

Current Wages:

On December 31, 2017, the minimum wage increased to $13.50.

New Changes:

On December 31, 2018, it will increase again to $15.00.

Fast Food Workers Outside of New York City Minimum Wage

In 2017, fast food employees outside of New York City were paid a minimum wage of $10.75.

Current Wages:

On December 31, 2017, it increased to $11.75.

New Changes:

On December 31, 2018, it will increase again to $12.75.

Date Fast Food Workers In

New York City

Fast Food Workers Outside

New York City

2017 $12.00 $10.75
December 31, 2017 $13.50 $11.75
December 31, 2018 $15.00 $12.75

New York State Employers General Minimum Wage

New York City has two minimum wages that apply and they depend upon the size of the employer.

In addition, depending on the location of the employee outside of New York City, different minimum wages apply.

New York City Small Employer General Minimum Wage

Small employers are businesses who have 10 or fewer employees. In 2017, they paid their employees a minimum wage of $10.50.

Current Wages:

On December 31, 2017, their wage went up to $12.00.

New Changes:

On December 31, 2018, it will rise again to $13.50.

New York City Large Employer General Minimum Wage

Large employers are businesses with 11 or more employees. The minimum wage for employees of large employers was $11.00 in 2017.

Current Wages

On December 31, 2017, it went up to $13.00.

New Changes:

On December 31, 2018, minimum wage will become $15.00.

Nassau, Suffolk, & Westchester Counties General Minimum Wage

Employees in Nassau, Suffolk, and Westchester Counties currently had a minimum wage of $10.00 in 2017.

Current Wages:

On December 31, 2017, it went up to $11.00.

New Changes:

It will become $12.00 on December 31, 2018.

Rest of New York State General Minimum Wage

New York State’s minimum wage was at $9.70 in 2017, for counties without specific minimum wages.

Current Wages:

On December 31, 2018, it rose to $10.40.

New Changes:

It will rise again at the end of 2018 to $11.10.

Effective Date NYC Small Biz NYC Large Biz Nassau, Suffolk & Westchester Counties Rest of

New York State

12/31/2016 $10.50 $11.00 $10.00 $9.70
12/31/2017 $12.00 $13.00 $11.00 $10.40
12/31/2018 $13.50 $15.00 $12.00 $11.10
12/31/2019 $15.00 TBA $13.00 $11.80

New York Tipped Employees Minimum Wage

Tipped employees in New York have possibly the most complex minimum wage. Under the law, if an employee receives less than the low tip amount, then the employer cannot claim any tip credit.

If the employee receives between the low and the high tip amount, then the tip credit cannot be higher than the low amount.

If the employee receives more than the high tip amount, then the employer can use a tip credit of the high tip amount.

New York City Tipped Employee of a Large Employer

Large employers currently had a low tip amount of $1.65 and a high tip amount of $2.70 in 2017.

If the employee made less than $1.65 in tips, then the employer paid at least $11.00 in the minimum wage for 2017.

If the employee made between $1.65 and $2.70 in tips, then the employer used a tip credit of $1.65 and pay the employee $9.35.

If the employee made more than $2.70 in tips, the employer could use a $2.70 tip credit and pay the employee $8.30.

How did it change for 2018?

On December 31, 2017, the low tip amount rose to $1.95. The high tip amount also rose and become $3.20.

Did you know it changes again near the end of the year?

On December 31, 2018, the low tip amount will rise again and become $2.25. The high tip amount will become $3.65.

New York City Tipped Employee of a Small Business

NYC small employers, 10 or fewer employees, currently had a low tip amount of $1.60 and a high tip amount of $2.55 in 2017.

As long as the employee earns at least the low tip amount, the employer can use it as a tip credit. If the employee earns at least the high tip amount, the employer can use the high amount as a tip credit.

Current Wages:

On December 31, 2017, the low tip amount rose to $1.80. The high tip amount became $2.95.

New Changes:

On December 31, 2018, the low tip amount will become $2.05 and the high tip amount will move to $3.30.

Date NYC 1-10

Employees Low

NYC 1-10

Employees

High

NYC 11+

Employees Low

NYC 11+ Employees High
December 31, 2016

Tip Amount

$1.60 $2.55 $1.65 $2.70
Minimum Cash Wage $8.90 $7.95 $9.35 $8.30
December 31, 2017

Tip Amount

$1.80 $2.95 $1.95 $3.20
Minimum Cash Wage $10.20 $9.05 $11.05 $9.80
December 31, 2018

Tip Amount

$2.05 $3.30 $2.25 $3.65
Minimum Cash Wage $11.45 $10.30 $12.75 $11.35

Nassau, Suffolk & Westchester Counties Tipped Employees

Employees in Nassau, Suffolk, and Westchester Counties currently had a low tip credit of $1.05 and a high tip credit of $2.45 in 2017.

Current Wages:

On December 31, 2017, the low tip amount became $1.65. The high tip amount became $2.70.

New Changes in 2018:

On December 31, 2018, the low tip amount will rise to $1.80. The high tip amount will rise to $2.95.

Tipped Employees in the Remainder of New York State

Tipped employees not in specified locations (the remainder of New York State) had a low tip amount of $1.45 and a high tip amount of $2.35 in 2017.

Current Wages:

On December 31, 2017, the low tip amount became $1.55 and the high tip amount became $2.55.

Upcoming Changes:

Starting December 31, 2018, the low tip amount rises to $1.65. The high tip amount goes to $2.70.

Date Nassau, Suffolk & Westchester

Low

Nassau, Suffolk & Westchester

High

Rest of

New York

Low

Rest of

New York

High

December 31, 2016 $1.50 $2.45 $1.45 $2.35
Minimum Cash Wage $8.50 $7.55 $8.25 $7.35
December 31, 2017 $1.65 $2.70 $1.55 $2.55
Minimum Cash Wage $9.35 $8.30 $8.85 $7.85
December 31,2018 $1.80 $2.95 $1.65 $2.70
Minimum Cash Wage $10.20 $9.05 $10.15 $9.10

Overview of the New York State Hospitality Service Employees Minimum Wage

As long as the employee receives at least the amount of the tip credit in actual tips, the employer can apply the tip credit to minimum wage and pay a cash minimum wage. Cash minimum wage plus the tip credit equals the minimum wage for tipped employees.

Minimum wage includes not only a tip credit and a minimum cash wage but also includes criteria under which an employer can apply for the tip credit and pay the minimum cash wage, instead of paying the full minimum wage.

In order for New York employers to pay an employee a minimum cash wage, the employee must qualify as a tipped employee.

First, service employees in the hospitality industry must work more than 80% of their shift doing tipped work. If an employee spends more than 2 hours or more than 20% of their shift doing non-tipped work, then the employer must pay that employee regular minimum wage.

In addition, tipped employees must receive at least a tip threshold for the employer to use the tip credit and pay the minimum cash wage instead of the regular minimum wage.

The tip threshold is broken into thresholds for employers over and under 10 employees and it is broken into resort and non-resort employees.

New York City Hospitality Service Employees of a Large Employer

New York City considers large employers to be those who have 11 or more employees. Tip employees of large employers had a cash wage of $9.15 in 2017. The employer used a tip credit of $1.85. In order to use the tip credit, the tipped employee must have earned at least an average tip threshold of $2.40 in average tips per hour for the week. Hotels that are open all year round fall under the regular wage.

Resort hotels’ tipped employees must receive an average tipped threshold of $6.15 per hour for the week.

Current Wages for 2018:

On December 31, 2017, the minimum cash wage went up to $10.85 an hour with the tip credit rising to $2.15 an hour. The tip threshold moved up to $2.80. Employees must now earn at least the tip threshold as an average amount of tips received for the week.

Report tipped employees must receive an average tipped threshold of $7.30 per hour.

What will it be in December, 2018?

On December 31, 2018, the minimum cash wage goes up to $12.50 and includes a tip credit of $2.50. Employees must average at least $3.25 in tips per hour for the week (tip threshold).

Resort employees must average at least $8.40 in hourly tips for the week (tip threshold).

New York City Hospitality Service Employees of Small Employers

Small employers are those businesses who have 10 or fewer employees. These tipped employees had a cash wage of $8.75 in 2017. Employers counted a tip credit of $1.75 if the employee meets a tip threshold of $2.30 in average tip earnings per hour for the week.

Resort employees had a tip threshold of $5.90 in average tips received for the week per hour.

Current Wages:

On December 31, 2017, the minimum cash wage increased to $10.00 with a tip credit of $2.00. The tip threshold for restaurant and year-round hotel employees became $2.60 an hour as an average tipped wage for the week.

Resort employees saw their tipped threshold go up to $6.75 as average hourly earnings of tips received.

Upcoming changes:

On December 31, 2018, the minimum cash wage rises to $11.25 with a tip credit of $2.25. Tip threshold becomes $2.95.

Resort employees’ tip threshold becomes $7.60 as an average amount of tips received per hour for the week.  

Nassau, Suffolk, & Westchester Counties Hospitality Service Employees Minimum Wage

These workers had a minimum cash wage

of $8.35 in 2017. The tip credit was $1.65. These employees must have earned an average of $2.15 in tips per hour for the week (tip threshold).

Resort employees must have earned an average tip threshold of $8.10 per hour for the week.

Current wages:

On December 31, 2017, the minimum cash wage became $9.15 an hour. The tip credit an employer may claim is $1.85. Tip threshold for the employee’s average hourly earnings in tips rose to $2.40.

Resort employees must earn an average of $6.15 in tips an hour (tip threshold).

New Changes:

On December 31, 2018, the minimum cash wage rises to $10.00 with a tip a tip credit of $2.00. Tip threshold rises to $2.60 for employees of restaurants and year-round hotels.

Remainder of New York State Hospitality Service Employees Minimum Wage

In 2017, the remainder of New York State had a minimum cash wage of $8.10 with a tip credit of $1.60. These employees must have met a tip threshold of $2.10. This was the minimum hourly average tip earnings the employee must reach for the week.

Resort employees must have met a tip threshold of at least $5.45 an hour.

Current wages:

On December 31, 2017, the minimum cash wage rose to $8.65 an hour with a tip credit of $1.75. The tip threshold became $2.25.

Resort employee’s tip threshold became $5.85.

New Changes

On December 31, 2018, the minimum cash wage rises to $9.25 with a tip credit of $1.85. The tip threshold will be set at $2.40.

Resort employees’ tip threshold will rise to $6.25.

Date Small Employers

1-10 employees

Large Employers

11+

employees

Nassau, Suffolk & Westchester Rest of

New York

December 31, 2016 $1.75 $1.85 $1.65 $1.60
Minimum Cash Wage $8.75 $9.15 $8.35 $8.10
Tip Threshold $2.30 $2.40 $2.15 $2.10
Resort Tip Threshold $5.90 $6.15 $5.60 $5.45
December 31, 2017 $2.00 $2.15 $1.85 $1.75
Minimum Cash Wage $10.00 $10.85 $9.15 $8.75
Tip Threshold $2.60 $2.80 $2.40 $2.25
Resort Tip Threshold $6.75 $7.30 $6.15 $5.85
December 31, 2018 $2.25 $2.50 $2.00 $1.85
Minimum Cash Wage $11.25 $12.50 $10.00 $9.25
Tip Threshold $2.95 $3.25 $2.60 $2.40
Resort Tip Threshold $7.60 $8.40 $6.75 $6.25

New York Hospitality Food Service Workers Overview

Food Service workers, not including fast food workers, must receive a minimum wage. Included in the minimum wage is the employees tipped amount and the employer’s minimum cash wage. However, employers can only use the tip credit if the employee has received at least that much in tips. Fast food employers cannot use a tip credit for their employees.

New York City Hospitality Food Service Employees Businesses With 11+ Workers

In 2017, Large Employers in New York City with Hospitality Food Service Employees had a minimum wage of $11.00. Employers could utilize a tip credit of $3.50 and pay a minimum cash wage of $7.50.

Current Wages for 2018:

On December 31, 2017, the minimum wage rose to $13.00 with a tip credit of $4.35. That makes the new minimum cash wage at $8.65.

New Changes:

On December 31, 2018, the minimum wage will be $15.00. Minimum cash wage will become $10.00 with a tip credit of $5.00.

New York City Hospitality Food Service Employers With 10 or Fewer Workers

Employees had a minimum wage, in 2017, of $10.50 an hour. The tip credit stands at $3.00 with a minimum cash wage of $7.50.

Current Wages:

On December 31, 2017, the minimum wage became $12.00 with a tip credit of $4.00 and a minimum cash wage of $8.00.

Upcoming Changes:

On December 31, 2018, the minimum wage becomes $13.50. Minimum cash wage will be $9.00 with a tip credit of $4.50.

Nassau, Suffolk, & Westchester Counties Hospitality Food Service Employees

In 2017, employees in Nassau, Suffolk, and Westchester counties enjoyed a minimum wage of $10.00. The tip credit was at $2.50 with a minimum cash wage of $7.50.

Current Wages:

On December 31, 2017, the minimum wage rose to $11.00. The tip credit is $3.50 and the minimum cash wage remains at $7.50.

New Changes:

On December 31, 2018, the minimum wage will rise to $12.00. The tip credit will rise to $4.00 an hour and the minimum cash wage will become $8.00.

Remainder of New York State Hospitality Food Service Employees

In 2017, the rest of the state’s hospitality food service employees had a minimum wage of $9.70. Employers claimed a tip credit of $2.20 and pay a cash minimum wage of $7.50.

Current Wages for 2018:

On December 31, 2017, the minimum wage became $10.40. The cash minimum wage stays at $7.50 with the tip credit rising to $2.90.

New Changes:

On December 31, 2017, the minimum wage rises again and becomes $11.10. The minimum cash wage remains at $7.50 with a new tip credit of $3.60.

Date Small Employers

1-10 employees

Large Employers

11+

employees

Nassau, Suffolk & Westchester Rest of

New York

December 31, 2016

Tip Credit

$3.00 $3.50 $2.50 $2.20
Minimum Cash Wage $7.50 $7.50 $7.50 $7.50
December 31, 2017

Tip Credit

$4.00 $4.35 $3.50 $2.90
Minimum Cash Wage $8.00 $8.65 $7.50 $7.50
December 31, 2018

Tip Credit

$5.00 $4.50 $4.00 $3.60
Minimum Cash Wage $10.00 $9.00 $8.00 $7.50

Farm Workers Minimum Wage

Farm workers must be paid the New York State General Minimum Wage.

Effective Date NYC Small Biz NYC Large Biz Nassau, Suffolk & Westchester Counties Rest of

New York State

12/31/2016 $10.50 $11.00 $10.00 $9.70
12/31/2017 $12.00 $13.00 $11.00 $10.40
12/31/2018 $13.50 $15.00 $12.00 $11.10
12/31/2019 $15.00 TBA $13.00 $11.80

Summary of New York Minimum Wage Laws

As shown above, New York has a very and complex and difficult minimum wage law to navigate. Employers who violate the minimum wage law face strict penalties and severe restrictions. Employers must make sure that they pay the minimum wages applicable to each region to employees who work in multiple locations.

Let SwipeClock Help

Businesses in New York have various minimum wage laws to comply with, but also have sick leave laws, state family leave laws conflicting sick leave and other leave laws.

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Resources

New York Fact Sheet

New York State Website

Written by Annemaria Duran. Last updated on January 15, 2018

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