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New York Construction Law

Category Archives: Labor & Employment in Construction

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Bad Language: A Good Reason to Fire People?

Posted in Labor & Employment in Construction

What is an employer to do when an employee goes on a tirade at the work place or on social media?  In general, an employee cannot be disciplined by his employer for statements about work-place concerns, such as wages or conditions of employment. Even the employee’s use of obscenities may be legally protected if used while complaining about the terms … Continue Reading

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Wage and Hour Pitfalls Part 1: What You Need To Know

Posted in Labor & Employment in Construction

1. Employers Must Pay “Manual Workers” Weekly.

In New York, employers are required to pay manual workers weekly.  A “manual worker” includes “a mechanic, workingman or laborer” or individuals who spend more than 25% of working time engaged in physical labor.  “Physical labor,” according to the Department of Labor, includes “countless physical tasks” not just those that require … Continue Reading

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New York Mandatory Pay Notices: What Employers Need to Know

Posted in Labor & Employment in Construction

While employers generally provide detailed information to new hires about their pay, New York law now requires employers to provide written notice to employees when they are hired.  A failure to provide the required written documentation may result in civil money penalties up to $5,000 per employee. 

Pursuant to the New York Wage Theft Prevention Act (WTPA), written pay … Continue Reading

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Are Employers Required to Make Contributions to Union Pension Fund for “Bonus” Payments?

Posted in Labor & Employment in Construction

Hammering Nails Construction has a CBA (collective bargaining agreement) with Local 1 of the United Brotherhood of Widgetmakers (“Union”). After a pension fund audit, Hammering Nails received a letter claiming it owed approximately $50,000 in additional pension contributions based on unreported “bonus” payments. Does the Company have a problem?

Under the CBA, Hammering Nails must pay pension and welfare contributions … Continue Reading

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Travel Time: To Pay or Not to Pay

Posted in Labor & Employment in Construction

Do I have to pay my workers for travel time when I provide transportation to a job site?

Slate Rock and Gravel, Inc. has a reputation for completing jobs on time and under budget. For their convenience, employees often report to the yard at 5:15 a.m. and then travel to the construction site in company trucks loaded with tools.  They … Continue Reading

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Did the Union Cross the (Picket) Line?

Posted in Labor & Employment in Construction

When I arrived home last night, there were picketers in my front yard carrying signs saying “Shame on Johnny!  He doesn’t pay union wages!”  This morning, the picketers have set up shop on the sidewalk outside our construction yard.  Now, they have signs telling my employees and customers that I am “Cheating the American Worker.”  Can I make them stop Continue Reading

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2017 Minimum Wage Hike: What You Need To Know

Posted in Labor & Employment in Construction

Effective December 31, 2016, New York no longer has a state wide minimum wage. In 2017, the minimum wage is based on where employees work. Also, in New York City rates depend on the number of people you employ.

WORK LOCATION MINIMUM WAGE New York City (11 or more employees) $11.00 New York City (1-10 employees) $10.50 Nassau, Suffolk, and… Continue ReadingContinue Reading

Effective January 22, 2017: NEW I-9 Forms

Posted in Labor & Employment in Construction

Employers are required to prepare and retain I-9 Forms for employees. The purpose – to verify an employee’s identity and authorization to work in the United States.  The New I-9 Forms should make them easier to complete and minimize mistakes that often result in significant monetary penalties.

The biggest change – the new forms can be completed electronically. Embedded question … Continue Reading

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The U.S. Government’s Recent Crackdown on Employer Misclassifications of Workers: What it Means for New York Construction

Posted in Labor & Employment in Construction

Currently, many employers throughout the U.S. Economy classify workers as “1099” independent contractors to reduce labor costs. By classifying a worker as an “independent contractor” instead of as an employee, employers avoid having to pay payroll taxes, the expenses associated with workers’ compensation and unemployment, employee benefits, and the time and money associated with administering and complying with various … Continue Reading

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