New Jersey and the federal government have several laws in place that dictate how employers handle pay and work of employees. These wage and hour statutes address minimum wage, paid leave and overtime, among other topics. Businesses must abide by these laws in order to not only keep a happy workforce, but also to avoid time-consuming and expensive litigation.
Minimum Wage in New Jersey
The minimum wage in New Jersey is $8.38 an hour, which is significantly above the federal minimum wage of $7.25 an hour. Every business in New Jersey is required to pay employees at least $8.38 an hour, unless the employees are exempt from the law.
Minimum Wage of Tipped Workers: The state and federal minimum wage for tipped workers is $2.13 an hour. However, if the worker does not make $8.38 an hour after tips are factored in, the employer is required to make up the difference.
Does Minimum Wage Apply to Me: There are several exceptions to New Jersey’s minimum wage laws, which means that employers may be able to pay less than $8.38 an hour to the following: people who work part time taking care of children in a private home; people younger than 18 who do not have a graduate permit; people who work in sales and are paid on commission; and people who work in a volunteer capacity for a nonprofit or religious corporation at a county or agricultural fair.
A more comprehensive list of exemptions can be viewed as part of New Jersey’s minimum wage act.
When Are Raises Required: There is no state or federal law that requires employers to give raises to employees. Instead, a raise is typically a matter of negotiation between companies and their workers.
Work Hours in New Jersey
New Jersey law states that no employee may be required to work more than 40 hours in a week without receiving pay for overtime.
Paying Overtime: A worker who spends more than 40 hours a week on the job must be paid time and a half for every hour worked over 40 hours. State law notes that there is not a requirement to pay overtime for working holidays, weekends or more than eight hours a day unless those hours exceed the 40-hour workweek.
Guaranteed Breaks and Meals: New Jersey does not require employers to provide breaks for employees. There are federal laws that simply state that all workers must be paid for the time spent working. Breaks lasting five to 20 minutes must be paid. Under federal law, employers do not have to pay for a meal break.
The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act requires employers to provide nursing mothers a break to pump milk for the first year after the child’s birth. Employers must also provide a place that is not a bathroom where nursing mothers may express milk.
Paid Time Off and Sick Pay: There is no statewide paid sick leave or time off law in New Jersey. However, several municipalities have enacted laws requiring employers to grant workers a certain amount of paid sick leave.
Notice Period for Employee Termination: There are no federal or state laws that dictate a notice period for terminating an employee. However, some New Jersey businesses may dictate steps that will be taken prior to firing someone, such as disciplinary action.
Plant Closings & Layoffs: New Jersey defaults to the federal Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification law, which states that covered employers must give 60 days’ notice of a mass layoff, or a layoff of at least 33 percent of the workforce. Covered employers also must give 60 days’ notice of a plant closing. This law applies to employers with at least 100 full-time employees or at least 100 employees who work a combined 4,000 hours or more every week.
The content on our website is only meant to provide general information and is not legal advice. We make our best efforts to make sure the information is accurate, but we cannot guarantee it. Do not rely on the content as legal advice. For assistance with legal problems or for a legal inquiry please contact you attorney.