Governor David Patterson of New York has signed into law the Wage Theft Prevention Act, which specifies new notification and reporting obligations on the part of employers and also raises the stakes money-wise on civil and criminal fines. It also provides for imprisonment in some circumstances.

The law requires employers to provide documentation to each employee, in both English and the employee’s native tongue, detailing that person’s  wage basis and how paychecks will be computed. These wage statements must be provided to each new employee and to all company employees on February 1 of each year.

The law, which amends section 195 of the State Labor Law, also requires employees to keep on file for six years wage statements for each employee for each pay period.

The law provides for liquidated damages for past due wages, so that a $1,000 oversight, miscalculation or deliberate wage abuse can end up costing the employer $2,000 plus any fines imposed.

Employers, stay in compliance with all wage and hour requirements. Get yourself a copy today of Personnel Concepts’ FLSA Overtime Rules Compliance Kit.