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Employment Increases in 2020 across the board and Minimum wages increase

All employees in the workforce benefit from an increase in total number of workers in the United States. Companies are expanding and many employees may face struggles in 2020 in the ever changing work environment of modern businesses.

Berlingieri Law, PLLC, provides legal services in New York and Connecticut.

The minimum wage in New York City is $15.00 per hour. The New York State Department of Labor oversees wage regulations in New York State. Businesses employing people in New York State should be aware of wage requirements and regulations.After December 31, 2019, all employees in New York City must be paid at least $15.00 per hour. In Nassau, Suffolk and Westchester counties, it is $13.00 per hour. In the remainder of the state, it is $11.80 per hour. There are different hourly rates for workers in the fast food industry and those who receive tips. These rates remain in effect until December 30, 2020. If you need additional assistance or want to file a complaint, please call:347-766-5185 for a free consultation

The minimum wage will continue to increase every year across New York State until it reaches $15.00 per hour on December 31st, 2020.  

Wage orders published by the Department of Labor can modify the minimum wage rate for workers in certain industries. Businesses should contact the Department of Labor if they will apply any credits, such as meals or tips, towards meeting the minimum wage rate. It is illegal to pay employees below the wage rate.

Under the Wage Theft Prevention Act, private employers in New York State must provide all of their employees (both exempt and non-exempt) with a pay notice. This pay notice must include the following information:

  • Pay rate, including overtime if applicable;
  • How the employee is paid (hourly, shift, day, week, piece, etc.);
  • When pay day is;
  • The Doing Business As (DBA) name of the employer; and
  • Contact information of the employer, such as the address and telephone number
  • Any allowances towards the minimum wage(tips, meals, lodging, etc);

Businesses should keep copies of all of their pay notices.

New York State Human Rights Law Expanded In 2019

The New York State Human Rights law is now more pro employee in 2019.

For example an employee does not have to complain about discrimination in order to establish a hostile work environment, and/or prove discrimination.

The time to file a complaint with the division of Human Rights is now longer. The Complainant/Plaintiff/Employee can now recovery attorneys fees for all discrimination under the New York State Human Rights Law, not only limited to sex discrimination or sexual harassment.

Important Updates to the New York State Human Rights Law


On August 12, 2019, Governor Cuomo signed legislation that strengthened protections against discrimination and harassment in the New York State Human Rights Law. The provisions of this law will go into effect at various times between August 2019 and August 2020. A brief description of these provisions, and their effective dates, is provided below.
Effective August 12, 2019:
• The Human Rights Law is to be liberally construed, under New York State law, without reference to any federal law that may lead to a more restrictive result.
Effective October 11, 2019:
• The Human Rights Law now explicitly includes protection in employment from harassment based on any protected class. In addition, domestic workers are now also protected from harassment on all bases. A list of all protected classes can be found in the adjoining section.
• The Human Rights Law now protects victims of harassment, including sexual harassment, in important new ways:
○ Harassment is against the law whenever an individual is subjected to inferior terms, conditions or privileges of employment.
○ The harassment need not be severe or pervasive in order for the employer to be liable. (However, the employer may raise a defense that the actions were not more than “petty slights or trivial inconveniences”).
○ In order to establish liability, the complainant does not have to identify a similarly situated person/employee that was treated more favorably.
○ A complainant does not have complain to their employer or file a formal grievance in order to establish liability.
• Non-employees working in the workplace are protected from all discrimination. The protections extend to contractors, subcontractors, vendors, consultants or others providing services in the workplace
• Punitive damages may be awarded against private employers.
• Attorney’s fees may be awarded in all employment cases.
• Under New York law, settlements of employment discrimination claims can only include the conditions of confidentiality if it is the complainant’s preference and agreements regarding nondisclosure must be “in writing to all parties in plain English, and, if applicable, the primary language of the complainant.”

THINGS TO LOOK FORWARD TO in Human Rights Law in New York next year.

Effective January 1, 2020:
• Under New York law, settlements of employment discrimination claims cannot prevent complainants from speaking to an attorney, the New York State Division of Human Rights, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, local human rights commissions, or any other form of law enforcement.
Effective February 8, 2020:
• The Human Rights Law will apply to all employers within New York State, even those with fewer than four employees. See adjoining section for more on the Law’s protections.

Effective August 12, 2020:
• The one-year statute of limitations for filing with the Division will be extended to three years for sexual harassment in employment cases only.

If you or someone you know has been subjected to workplace harassment contact Berlingieri Law, PLLC. Helping employees only in workplace matters. Call now for a free consultation.

New York Minimum Wage Now $15.00. per hour for some in NYC, $13.50, $12.00 per hour and $11.10 for New Yorkers

New York State’s Minimum Wage gives New Yorkers a raise for 2019.

New York State’s Minimum Wage will employees benefit or will there be less jobs for workers and higher prices for customers?

The path for a statewide $15 minimum wage plan will begin to raise the earnings of more than 2.1 million New Yorkers, in all industries across the state.

NYC – Big Employers (of 11 or more)$11.00$13.00$15.00
NYC – Small Employers (10 or less)$10.50$12.00$13.50$15.00
Long Island & Westchester$10.00$11.00$12.00$13.00$14.00$15.00
Remainder of New York State Workers$9.70$10.40$11.10$11.80$12.50*

Every year or at the time of a pay change New York employers must provide employees a wage notice pursuant to NYLL-195(1) and on each payday a wage statements (paystubs) pursuant to NYLL-195(3).

How will the Supreme Court decide if sexual orientation is protected in the workplace under Title VII?

The Supreme Court will decide “Whether the prohibition in Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. § 2000e-2(a)(1), against employment discrimination “because of . . . sex” encompasses discrimination based on an individual’s sexual orientation.”

The Supreme Court to decide Tile VII “Sex” questions.

Combined with the question

Issue: Whether Title VII prohibits discrimination against transgender people based on (1) their status as transgender or (2) sex stereotyping under Price Waterhouse v. Hopkins.

Issue: Whether discrimination against an employee because of sexual orientation constitutes prohibited employment discrimination “because of . . . sex” within the meaning of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. § 2000e-2.

CERTIORARI GRANTED 17-1618 ) BOSTOCK, GERALD L. V. CLAYTON COUNTY, GA ) 17-1623 ) ALTITUDE EXPRESS, INC., ET AL. V. ZARDA, MELISSA, ET AL. The petitions for writs of certiorari are granted. The cases are consolidated and a total of one hour is allotted for oral argument. 18-107 R.G. & G.R. HARRIS FUNERAL HOMES V. EEOC, ET AL. The petition for a writ of certiorari is granted limited to the following question: Whether Title VII prohibits discrimination against transgender people based on (1) their status as transgender or (2) sex stereotyping under Price Waterhouse v. Hopkins, 490 U. S. 228 (1989).

Altitude Express Inc. v. Zarda
Docket No.17-1623. Cert. Granted

Older Blog: Dec. 2018 –

The Supreme Court may want to take up the Zarda question to avoid an inevitable Circuit-Split and incongruous application of Title VII.  

The last conference for the selection committee of Justices could have granted the Zarda petition for certiorari should be heard by the 9 Justices was set for December 3, 2018, however it has since been rescheduled.  

The Supreme Court will have to decide whether it wants to hear the Second Circuit case in its upcoming 2019 term.

New Push for $15.00 Minimum Wages After Mid-Term Elections

Minimum wages laws could be changing nationwide in the upcoming legislative sessions.  As the new year approaches and this year’s legislative sessions wind down, we look to the future of Minimum Wage laws.

Congressional lawmakers in Washington may seek to raise the federal minimum wage in the upcoming sessions of congress. The current federal minimum wage $7.25 an hour for close to 10 years. Congress members may introduce a new or modified version of the the Raise the Wage Act,  to raise the federal minimum progressively to $15.00 over 7 years.  The law will allow employers time to plan and may lead to job cuts.

The Raise the Wage Act seeks to set automatic increases to the minimum wage linked to median wage growth for the U.S. labor work force. The the Raise the Wage Act, would  progressively eliminate the lower minimum wage for waiters and servers and bartenders and other tipped workers. The tipped workers now make far less in minimum wages per hour. The Raise the Wage Act also provides protections for disabled workers who are often paid less than the minimum wage. The Raise the Wage Act seeks to offer protections for low wage workers.

Local lawmakers in cities across the us including Milwaukee Wisconsin and Detroit Michigan passed $15.00 minimum wage laws in the November 2018 elections.

Other states may be compelled to raise their own minimum wages as more municipalities make the choice to raise minimum wages to $15.00 per hour.  New York is on track to be a $15.00 minimum wage state in the coming years.

If  you have minimum wages questions or have been denied pay or wages or minimum wage or overtime pay, contact Berlingieri Law, PLLC for a free consultation.

New Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh Confirmed to Supreme Court

Brett Kavanaugh is confirmed to the United States Supreme Court by the Senate and sworn in as Associate Justice by his predecessor and former boss Associate Justice Anthony Kennedy in a  ceremony at the White House with President Trump and his family.  Claims of sexual harassment and misconduct should be taken seriously and investigated.  Unsupported claims  and inconsistencies in testimony of purported accusers are to be treated with suspicion and all the facts need to be clear.


Despite the politicized and spurious allegations brought forth by Kavanaugh and the President’s opponents, Kavanaugh is sworn in as the newest member of the United States Supreme Court, filling the seat of retired Justice Kennedy. The Kavanaugh confirmation shows us that outlandish and unsupported claims of sexual misconduct are dismissed and not worth pursuing.


The 9 member panel of Justices seek to hear new cases before the SCOTUS in its fall term. Employment issues and Employment law may be decided.


Kavanaugh could rule in favor of employee rights and could uphold religious freedoms of individuals under the First Amendment.  Kavanaugh’s addition to the bench along with Associate Justice Neil Gorsuch give individual rights supporters a needed boost in the Nation’s highest court.


Employment law may be affected in terms of expanding individual rights under the law in employment. However the plain meaning of statutes like Title VII  and the limitation of overreaching district courts and circuit courts may be reigned back by the new dynamic on the supreme court. Chief Justice John Roberts swears Kavanaugh in below (officially).

Wrongful Termination Lawyers with Top 5 Star Reviews

Berlingieri Law, PLLC is here to help you if you have been wrongfully terminated in New York or Connecticut.

As you can see from one client review:

“Attorney Berlingieri was extremely helpful in my employment case. The first time i contacted Berlingieri law regarding my situation my questions were answered promptly and accurately. Attorney Berlingieri processed my claim in a timely fashion. I highly recommend Berlingieri law.”


Another Client said:

“Hand down I would like to say Chris Berlingieri was vary helpful and we have many cases with him he make his client first piority and yes he has won some also we know from experience I don’t know who would put anything less then 5 🌟 must be rateing the wrong person because he getts result I highly recommend him if you want a good law attorney on your side thanks for all your time and you’ll always be our go to man to get the job done😀”

Or as put by another client:

Gets results answers any and all questions with in a reasonable amount time has a great attitude and very patient gives specific details with things I found confusing just a all around great experience

Contact Berlingieri Law, PLLC today for a free consultation. Call 347-766-5185 any time.
Prior Results do Not Guarantee Future Similar Outcomes.

Berlingieri Law, PLLC, Founder Christopher Berlingieri Earns Avvo Clients Choice 2018 – Award

Berlingieri Law, PLLC, Founder Christopher Berlingieri earns Avvo Clients Choice 2018 – Award.


Chris did an excellent job fighting for my wrongful termination case and appreciate his professionalism during the entire process. I fully recommend Chris for future legal work
Fought and won my case with a substantial settlement, was very fair with his compensation and was clearly invested in the success of the case.

He did everything for me! Very nice guy and did everything I had hoped for!












Attorney Client Privilege

Attorney Client privilege in New York and Federal Courts – the client holds the privilege. Attorney cannot disclose confidential information as directed by the client.   Employment lawyers at Berlingieri Law, PLLC holds attorney client privilege as a top priority and treats your personal confidential information with the needed level of care.

Recent events of the politically motivated raid of the President of the United State’s personal lawyer’s New York City office reminds us that“the privilege of confidential communication between client and attorney should not only be liberally construed, but must be regarded as sacred.”



What should a client keep in mind?

Attorney client privilege is an essential part of the client’s relationship with its attorney.  While the actual application differs between jurisdictions, and is much more complicated than the basic outlines here, the client should bear in mind some basic principles when communicating with its attorneys.            

First, the privilege covers consultation even for potential representation.  Therefore, if a client meets with a potential attorney, but does not retain the attorney, the communications still are privileged.

Second, the client should make certain to limit any disclosures only to the attorneys.  Importantly, not only should a client not include individuals, who are not essential to the representation in any communications, but the client must also be careful about the form of the communication, including what email account, mobile device, etc. that is used.  If the client does not have an expectation that the communications are private, the privilege will not attach.

Finally, and most importantly, the purpose of the privilege is to provide “full and frank” disclosure between client and attorney.  As such, the client should not hide things from its attorney as the privilege will cover even harmful communications if provided in this context.


Call today for a free consultation.

Wage Theft (Fair Labor Standards Act and New York Labor Law) Cases For Worker’s Rights

Berlingieri Law, PLLC is here for you – We Fight for Worker’s Rights and Victims of Wage Theft Across the USA – now in the Northern District of  California – for a case that started in NYC for Ex-employees were ordered to fake bar app’s popularity: suit

Story Published in April 207 about lawsuit on behalf of worker’s rights.

It’s fake brews.

Two employees of nightlife-rating app Bartrendr claim they were ordered to be pretend partygoers and post constantly in order to make the app seem popular.

The now-defunct app encouraged users to post comments on beers and bar scenes in real time.

The California bosses were so desperate to drum up business that they ordered workers to adopt “multiple pseudonyms or personas in order to give the application the appearance of more user interaction,” according to a lawsuit filed by Staci Spector, 47, and Lisa Garcia, 46.

They often worked more than 80 hours a week but were only paid $1,500 a month, they claim. Plaintiffs were fired in May 2015 after complaining, they charge in a wrongful-termination suit filed in Manhattan Supreme Court.