Governor Cuomo Pushes Increased Minimum Wage

Minimum wage ImageNew York Governor Andrew Cuomo echoed President Obama this week by championing a raise for the lowest paid workers:  “We would raise the minimum wage to $10.50 statewide and in New York City… to $11.50.”  New York State’s minimum wage currently exceeds the Federal minimum wage at $8.75 per hour.   In his annual State of the State address, Cuomo address growing wage disparities: “We believe if you work full time, you should be able to pay the rent and pay for food and not live in poverty.”

Gov. Cuomo was not alone in this week in addressing minimum wage concerns. President Obama made his third consecutive plea with Congress to adjust the minimum wage for all workers, and encouraged Congress to try to live on $15,000 per year. “If not, vote to give millions of the hardest-working people in America a raise,” he said.  Obama has previously directed the Labor Department to revise overtime rules.

One of the largest groups of workers in the modern economy that do not receive proper minimum wage are interns — especially in media, fashion, and entertainment industries. For other employees and without realizing it, companies may pay employees less than minimum wage if asked to work during meal breaks, when they have to travel from job sites, and if they have their tips stolen while working in the restaurant or catering industry.



Think Overtime Compliance is Optional? Think Again!

Failure to comply with overtime laws can result in both costly penalties paid to the government and damages to employees.

Complying with overtime laws can seem overwhelming, especially in tough times when every company
is trying to do more with less. Employers need to know that failure to adhere to overtime rules can put
their company at serious risk for employee lawsuits and government auditing.

Most overtime violations stem from non-compliant pay practices involving more than one employee
and occurring over a period of time. The burden of proof is on the employer, not the employee. When
in the hot seat, organizations that use manual employee time tracking processes often must scramble
to locate and reconstruct their records.

The cost of non-compliance is staggering. Employee awards of triple the amount of unpaid wages for
up to three years are common. Don’t forget to add the cost of legal fees—your own, and often times
the employee’s attorney expenses and court cost.

According to, penalties and damages can include:

Penalties payable to the government:
• Civil penalties of up to $1,000 for each violation and up to $11,000 for each violation of the child labor laws
• Criminal prosecution and fines up to $10,000
• Restraining shipments of goods produced through violations of the child labor, overtime and other wage and hour laws

Damages payable to workers:
• Unpaid wages plus liquidated damages equal to double the rate of unpaid wage – i.e., triple the amount of unpaid wages over a two or three year period
• Attorneys’ fees and court costs

Compliance is the only way to protect your company. Using an automated time and attendance system
such as Attendance on Demand can help by fairly and impartially enforcing your company’s pay rules
and flagging employees approaching overtime. It removes the worry and compliance headaches and
lets you manage your overtime effectively.