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Employment Law

Additional Protections that Employees Receive Under New York Labor Law:

by Marc A. Rapaport, Esq

New York employees receive far more substantial wage and hour protections than employees in other states. These additional protections are provided to New York employees by NY’s Labor Law. Some protections that are frequently violated by employers include:

The Right to Call-In Pay:

New York employees are entitled to receive minimum wage for at least three hours each time they report to work, even if they work less than three hours. This protection is provided to all employees in New York State pursuant to 12 N.Y.C.R R. § 137-1.6, which states:

An employee who by request or permission of the employer reports for duty on any day, whether or not assigned to actual work, shall be paid at the applicable minimum wage rate for at least three hours for one shift, or the number of hours in the regularly scheduled shift, whichever is less.

The foregoing rule is intended to spare employees the burden of being required to travel to their workplace, only to find out that the employer has changed its mind and/or there is no work to be performed.

Tip/Service Charge:

NYLL § 196-d prohibits employers from demanding or accepting, directly or indirectly, any part of the gratuities (tips) received by an employee.


New York law requires employers to reimburse their employees for the cost of required uniforms. The definition of “uniform” is very broad, and includes any “clothing required to be worn while working at the request of an employer, or to comply with any federal, state or local law, rule or regulation, except clothing that may be worn as part of an employee’s ordinary wardrobe.” (N.Y.C.R.R. § 1465.3.10). In addition, the employer must reimburse the employee for costs associated with laundering and maintain uniforms.

Prohibition against Retaliation:

The New York Labor Law has an anti-retaliation provision. This prevents employers from retaliating against an employee for complaining to the employer or to the NY Department of Labor regarding a violation of the Labor Law or for instituting a proceeding for past-due wages or to enforce any other rights afforded to the employee under the Labor Law.

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