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VIEWPOINT: N.Y.’s Minimum Salary Level to Qualify for Executive Exemptions Will Rise

By Subhash Viswanathan

Date:

Ever since the New York State Department of Labor (NYSDOL) announced an increase in the minimum wage from $12.50 per hour to $13.20 an hour in areas outside of New York City, and Nassau, Suffolk, and Westchester counties effective Dec. 31, 2021, we have been expecting a proportionate increase in the minimum weekly salary to qualify for the executive and administrative exemptions. For the last few years, the minimum weekly salary to qualify for the executive and administrative exemptions has been 75 times the minimum hourly wage. The NYSDOL has confirmed that this proportionate increase will occur effective on Dec. 31.

The following question and answer are included on the department’s minimum wage FAQ page:

Will the minimum weekly salary for overtime-exempt administrative and executive employees increase on Dec. 31, 2021?

Yes. Each time the New York State minimum wage increases, the state’s minimum salary required for executive and administrative employees will increase proportionately. On Dec. 31, the state minimum weekly salary for administrative and executive employees will range from $990 per week for employees in New York state, to $1,125 per week for employees who work in Nassau, Suffolk, and Westchester counties and in New York City for any size employer and fast-food establishments.

So, effective on Dec. 31, the minimum weekly salary to qualify for the executive and administrative exemptions in areas outside of New York City, Nassau, Suffolk, and Westchester counties will be $990 per week. The minimum weekly salary to qualify for the executive and administrative exemptions in New York City, Nassau, Suffolk, and Westchester counties will be $1,125 per week. There is no minimum weekly salary under New York law to qualify for the professional exemption. However, with a few exceptions (such as for teachers, doctors, and lawyers), employers still must comply with the federal minimum weekly salary of $684 in order to classify employees as exempt under the professional exemption.      

Subhash Viswanathan is a member (partner) at Bond, Schoeneck & King PLLC in Syracuse. Viswanathan represents employers in many different industries on labor and employment issues. Contact him at suba@bsk.com. This viewpoint is drawn from the firm’s New York Labor and Employment Law Report.

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