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Jackson Lewis Legal Updates

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New York Legal Developments
By Elizabeth M Saitta
Posted: 2024-02-27T12:00:00Z

New York Legal Developments

As of February 2024


In Case You Missed It


Minimum Wage Increases.  As of January 1, 2024, the minimum wage rates in New York increased as follows:

·      Long Island, New York City and Westchester (elsewhere in NY is reflected in parentheses)

§ 2024 $16.00/hour ($15.50/hour)

§ 2025 $16.50/hour ($16.00/hour)

§ 2026 $17.00/hour ($16.50/hour)


Salary Exemption Threshold. As of January 1, 2024, the minimum salary threshold for exempt employees in New York increased as follows:

·      Long Island, New York City and Westchester

§ 2024 – $1,200.00/week ($62,400.00 per year)

§ 2025 – $1,237.50/week ($64,350.00 per year)

§ 2026 – $1,275.00/week ($66,300.00 per year)


·      Elsewhere in New York

§ 2024 – $1,124.20/week ($58,458.40 per year)

§ 2025 – $1,161.65/week ($60,405.80 per year)

§ 2026 – $1,199.10/week ($62,353.20 per year)



Paid Family Leave Benefits. Employees taking NYPFL receive benefits up to a cap of 67% of the current New York State Average Weekly Wage (“NYSAWW”). In 2024, the NYSAWW increased to $1,718.15, which means the maximum weekly benefit is $1,151.16 (compared to $1,131.08 in 2023). This is a $20.08 increase from the maximum weekly benefit for 2023.


Notice of Eligibility for Unemployment.  New York updated its unemployment notice requirements to require employers to provide written notice of the right to file for unemployment benefits to any employee whose employment has been terminated or whose scheduled working hours have been reduced. This notice applies to all employees and must be made any time the following circumstances result in total or partial unemployment: (1) a permanent or indefinite separation from employment; (2) hours are reduced; (3) temporary suspension; or (4) interruption in employment.


Settlement Agreements. A recent amendment to New York’s General Obligations Law prohibits settlement agreements of discrimination/harassment claims from containing liquidated damages for breach of confidentiality provisions; allows “up to” 21 days to consider confidentiality, and prohibits agreement from containing clause where employee affirms he or she was not subject to discrimination/harassment. 


Legal Activities. A recent amendment to New York’s Legal Activities law bans mandatory attendances at captive audience meetings in which employers express their religious and political beliefs, including those on labor issues such as union organizing. This amendment is intended to protect employees’ freedom of speech and conscience.


New Protections under NYS Human Rights Law. A recent amendment to the NYSHRL added “gender identity or expression” as a protected class for purposes of the NYSHRL’s prohibitions on discrimination against interns. This addition is consistent with other provisions of the NYSHRL that extend such protections to employees.


Upcoming Developments


Threshold for Applicability of Wage Payment Protections. Effective March 13, 2024, the salary level for exclusions for certain executive, admin, and professional employees will increase from $900 to $1,300 per week (e.g., claims for wage supplements).


Freelance Isn’t Free Act. Effective May 20, 2024, business are required to provide any freelance worker with a written contract if the freelance work is worth at least $800, inclusive of multiple projects over a 120-day period.  The Act sets a 30-day deadline for payment in full unless another time frame is agreed to by the parties.  The written contract, a physical or electronic copy of which must be furnished to the freelancer, also must include the name and mailing address of both parties, an itemization of all services to be provided by the worker, the value of services to be provided, and the rate and method of compensation.


Request for Access to Personal Accounts Prohibited.  Effective July 11, 2024, employers are prohibited from demanding login information, including username and password information to popular social media websites such as Facebook, Twitter as well as login information to email accounts and other extremely personal accounts as a condition of hiring, as well as promotions, and lateral movement within companies.


Clean Slate Act.  Effective November 16, 2024, employers are prohibited from inquiring about sealed records or discriminating against job applicants or employees based upon sealed conviction records.  Certain state-specific misdemeanor and felony criminal convictions will be automatically sealed upon meeting certain requirements.




This material is provided for informational purposes only. For additional information, please contact SHRM LI Legislative Committee Chair, Melissa Pascualini.

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