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New Jersey Contracting Crisis – The War on Misclassification Rages On

Background: Soon after being elected, New Jersey’s Governor created a task force to end misclassification of independent contractors, and the state’s Department of Labor and Workforce Development (DOL) began increasing audits and its scrutiny of contractors within the state.

YEAR-END REMINDER: New Jersey’s Salary History Ban Takes Effect January 1, 202

In just a few short weeks, New Jersey employers will no longer be allowed to ask prospective employees about their salary history during the application or interview process or rely upon salary history in setting compensation. The rationale for the new statewide law is that setting compensation based on prior salary may perpetuate an unlawful pay disparity. By excluding salary history from the mix, employers will only be able to set compensation based on lawful considerations, including the specific job duties of the position and the applicant’s skill, education, training, and experience.

New Jersey Bill Creating Presumption of Employment for Independent Contractors Could Decimate the State's Gig Economy

Executive Summary: Recently, New Jersey took several steps to severely restrict the use of independent contractors or gig workers in the Garden state. The latest effort is Bill S4204, which creates a presumption of employment status for contractors.

New Jersey Bill Would Bring California-Style ABC Test to the Garden State

Already a tough place for employers, New Jersey may be about to get even tougher. The Garden State is one of only a handful of states widely using the so-called ABC test, which makes it harder for businesses to classify workers as independent contractors. State legislators now want to make it even more difficult to satisfy the ABC test with a new bill, SB 4204

New Jersey Is About to Take Another Step Towards Eliminating the Use of Independent Contractors by Providing Them with Benefits

Executive Summary: The New Jersey Legislature appears poised to pass S67, the Portable Benefits Act for Independent Contractors, in the upcoming lame-duck session. If passed, the Governor is expected to sign the bill before the end of the year. The bill doubles down the current administration’s effort to end misclassification of independent contractors by creating a financial disincentive to utilizing contractors. Though the intent of the bill seems to be directed at online companies such as Uber, Lyft, Amazon, Handy and others, the impact will affect any business that relies on contractors. The bill also appears to subtly create new opportunities for organized labor through the creation of “Qualified Benefit Providers.” At least half of the members of the Boards of these funds must be worker representatives or workers. Though not in its final form, it appears some form of this bill will soon become law.

Employers Beware: New Jersey Enacts One of the Toughest “Wage Theft” Laws in the Country

On August 6, 2019, Acting Governor Sheila Oliver signed the New Jersey Wage Theft Act (WTA) into law. The law has been touted by proponents as the toughest wage theft statute in the country. Notwithstanding its name, the WTA goes far beyond attempting to prevent and punish intentional “wage theft” by significantly expanding the liability even the best-intentioned employers will face for state wage law violations.

New Jersey Passes the Broadest Wage Theft Law in Country With Dire Consequences for Employers

Introduction: On the heels of the broadest Pay Equity law in the country, New Jersey has just passed the broadest wage theft law in the country, which is certain to lead to increased litigation. Unwary employers may not only be facing insurmountable fines and penalties, but potentially jail time for even minor violations of the new law. The new law establishes treble damages and criminal penalties for non-payment of wages to New Jersey employees. More importantly, there is a presumption of retaliation for any adverse employment action that occurs for months after an employee complains about their wages. The presumption is rebuttable, but only if the employer produces clear and convincing evidence. The law further extends the statute of limitations to six years and allows for reinstatement of employees.

New Jersey Adds Sharp Teeth, and Employer Notice Duty, to Wage and Hour Law

On August 6, 2019, New Jersey enacted its Wage Theft Law, transforming the state’s wage and hour laws into one of the most robust in the country. As discussed below, the law substantially expands the civil and criminal recourse available for nonpayment of wages and for retaliation. Among other things, the statute broadens potential individual, and joint and successor liability to employers and certain officers and agents. Most components of the law took immediate effect.

New Jersey Passes New Salary History Ban

New Jersey has enacted a new law prohibiting employers from seeking or relying on job applicants’ salary history.

New Jersey Wage Theft Law Increases Employer Liability for Wage and Hour Violations

New Jersey’s Wage Theft Act (WTA) significantly enhances employer penalties under the state’s wage and hour laws by adding liquidated damages and providing extra protections for employee retaliation claims. In addition, the WTA makes client-employers and labor contractors jointly and severally liable “for any violations of the provisions of State wage and hour laws,” including those on retaliation. In fact, the WTA declares any waiver of its “joint and several liability” section “void and unenforceable.”
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