15 in ’19: Minimum Wage Increase Goes Into Effect

As of December 31, 2018, the minimum wage has increased for employers throughout New York State as follows:

Employer Type

Minimum Wage

New York City Employers
(11 or more employees)


Fast Food Establishments* Located in New York City


New York City Employers
(10 or less employees)


Fast Food Establishments* Located outside New York City


Long Island and Westchester Employers
(any size)


Employers Located in the Remainder of New York State
(any size)


These minimum wage increases were enacted as part of the 2016-2017 State Budget, which included a plan to gradually implement a $15 minimum wage throughout New York State.

This year’s increase marks the last of the planned increases for New York City employers with 11 or more employees and Fast Food Establishments located in New York City.  New York City employers with 10 or fewer employees (other than Fast Food Establishments) will be required to pay the $15 minimum wage beginning December 31, 2019, while employers located outside New York City will be required to implement more gradual minimum wage increases over the next several years.

The Budget similarly provides for gradual increases in the minimum wage for tipped workers, whereby employers in most industries are permitted to pay workers who receive tips (which meet a designated threshold) a lower hourly wage.  Additional information regarding the tipped minimum wage for workers throughout New York State can be found here.   

For additional information regarding the applicable minimum wage for a particular industry or location within New York State, guidance from the State can be found here.

*A Fast Food Establishment is defined as a business that meets the following criteria: (1) primarily serves food or drinks, including coffee shops, juice bars, donut shops and ice cream parlors; (2) offers limited service where customers order and pay before eating, including restaurants with tables but without full table service and places that only provide take-out service; and (3) is part of a chain of 30 or more locations, including individually-owned establishments associated with a brand that has 30 or more locations nationally.

Jill Kahn Marshall Highlights 2019 Minimum Wage IncreasesThis article is intended as a general discussion of these issues only and is not to be considered legal advice or relied upon.  For more information, please contact RPJ Attorney Jill Kahn Marshall who counsels both companies and individuals on employment matters (including best practices, claims of harassment and discrimination in the workplace, employment and separation agreements, and employment litigation).  Ms. Marshall  is admitted to practice law in New York and Massachusetts.  Attorney Advertising.