Spending 80% less time scheduling restaurants is now possible with the help of modern technology. New York State has a population of nearly 20 million and 50,000 restaurants, so it's no surprise that the state has a number of laws in place to protect visitors and employees of these establishments. This comprehensive guide will provide an overview of some of the most important New York restaurant labor laws that you should be aware of. The minimum wage for restaurant workers in New York depends on the position, the location, the restaurant where they worked and the date you're reading this.
In addition, the number of employees who work in your restaurant can determine your minimum wage and, under New York law, your employee list includes all the employees who are on the payroll of the restaurants you own, even if they work in different locations. It is also mandatory for restaurants to display the state poster on the minimum wage, in addition to the poster on wage deductions and the poster on tips specific to each restaurant, in their restaurant. Overtime pay in New York is 1.5 times the employee's normal hourly wage and is required for all hours worked more than 40 hours. Employees can't waive this right, so offering them additional shifts if they accept their normal salary won't save you from those demands for late payments.
Split shifts are allowed at New York restaurants, but there's a downside. If the time between the start and end of an employee's working day exceeds 10 hours, that employee is entitled to differentiated pay, which requires that an additional hour of minimum wage be paid per day. Restaurants can pay their employees twice a month, biweekly, weekly, or monthly, but they must inform employees of the day on which they will be paid. Don't rush to schedule employees for on-call shifts: New York law requires that these hours be counted toward employee pay. In addition, you cannot require employees to pay for or maintain the required uniforms.
However, you can require them to pay for and maintain clothing according to a dress code. New York's paid family leave provides up to ten weeks off for employees who are first-time parents (of newborns, foster children, and adoptive children), employees who care for a family member with a “serious health condition” and employees who help a loved one if their “family member” is deployed overseas in active military service, at 50% of the employee's average weekly wage, up to 50% of the average weekly wage in the state. As an employer, you cannot discriminate against employees who go on leave. The program is funded by a small payroll deduction (0.153% of an employee's salary in each pay period). So, while you must fill the position of an employee during the leave, you won't have to pay that employee's salary for the hours they haven't actually worked in your restaurant. In addition, employers don't have to offer paid vacation days during holidays and can schedule employees to work on holidays without an additional hourly wage (unless the time worked qualifies as overtime).New York State does not require restaurants to offer their employees paid or unpaid sick time, although businesses are still subject to the Family and Medical Leave Act, which normally applies to more serious health problems.
However, in New York City, employers must provide employees with up to 40 hours of sick leave per year, accrued at a rate of one hour for every 30 hours worked. New York restaurants must be absent from work for at least twenty-four consecutive hours each week. Keep these laws in mind if you employ minors in your restaurant. Finally, be sure to report all injuries suffered by a child at work. Modern technology has made it easier than ever before for restaurant managers to stay compliant with labor laws while still providing their staff with flexible working hours.
Restaurant scheduling software can help managers save time when it comes to scheduling staff and ensure that all labor laws are being followed. Additionally, offering breaks during shifts can help keep staff productive and happy. AJ Beltis is a freelance writer with nearly a decade of experience in the restaurant industry.