The new minimum wage law takes effect in a little over three months, but it’s not as straightforward as you may think. How much the minimum wage will rise and when depends in part on the size and type of business, and the age and position of the employee.

NJBIA Vice President Mike Wallace has put together a new Fast Facts that breaks it all down, and offers members a handy chart on when the different provisions of the law take effect.

Gov. Phil Murphy signed A-15 on Feb.  4., setting New Jersey on the path to raise the minimum wage to $15 by 2024 for most businesses. For most businesses, the minimum wage will increase to $10 per hour on July 1 and $11 per hour on Jan. 1, 2020. Wages will increase at a slower rate for very small businesses and certain seasonal businesses. The law also provides for a training wage and has exemptions for qualified minors, some part-time employees, certain salespersons, and others.

“NJBIA was able to negotiate certain provisions that will help protect businesses that are especially vulnerable to such a large mandated wage hike,” Wallace said. “We did not, however, get some critical provisions that would call for an economic analysis and tax credits for small businesses, to name a few, that we continue to work on.

“This Fast Facts will help member companies take advantage of provisions that are designed to help them cope with this change in New Jersey’s wage and hour law,” he said.

NJBIA Fast Facts compliance briefs are a free service available only to NJBIA member companies. Go here to download the minimum wage Fast Facts (password required).

NJBIA also wants to hear from businesses about how the minimum wage increase is impacting them. Please email NJBIA at to tell us the actions you’re taking now and into the phasing in of the law in July ($10 an hour) and again in January 2020 ($11 an hour). NJBIA will continue to relate these impacts in real time to our policymakers. The more information we have, the better armed we will be to seek corrective legislation on your behalf.

4 responses to “Who Exactly Is Affected by the New Minimum Wage Law”

  1. jill says:

    The actions I have taken are sad. So far, I have cut my hourly staff by one per shift in preparation so they learn how to work more efficiently.. I will not open another store in NJ. I have a lease (in-progress) for my next store in PA. I cried on Monday when I realized I have to withdraw from the high school Workplace Readiness Programs where I support young adults with special needs. They work in my store 2 hours per day with a coach in the hopes I can hire them. I cannot hire them if I need to pay them $11/hour by next Jan (that will become $15/hour), when they cannot do the same job as an employee who will master every skill as needed in my model. I have drastically cut back my community donations because I need to find a way to get back $30,000 the new laws will cost me (just by the end of 2020), and my donations have been about $10,000 per year. I own a retail (franchise) restaurant. I have hired very young team members ages 15 and up. I have provided guidance, support, educational support, and honestly, probably saved at least two of their lives. I have paid for one to get their GED when they dropped out of HS, and required them to finish it, as I won’t hire someone who has not finished HS when that age. I provide a matching IRA to SUPPORT AND TEACH them how to save money and learn the fruits of this. This ENTRY LEVEL job has allowed them to learn, make mistakes, grow, build confidence, friendships and learn community involvement as we support the community wholeheartedly. These young members of our society have ZERO work skills coming in. I teach them how to sweep a floor, how to count money, how to give change, how to interact with a customer and each other, resolve conflicts, pay bills, get help, talk to their parents, build their self-confidence, get ready for college, share their worries about abuse, prom dates, life skills, how to take a breath, and have fun at work! I provide a place for them to hang-out, not do drugs, not get in trouble. They have some pretty tough lives and I know more than I want to sometimes. I accept them unconditionally and pay them fairly. NOT ONE OF THEM AGREES with the $15/hour goal. They prefer to EARN their increases by mastering skills and taking on responsibility. (My avg. hourly wage is $11.25/hour which includes asst. manager wages of $15.00/hour). I offer them a place to have hope, a job, and a career. Two of my team members will now be partners in another store! They earned that by starting out at minimum wage 5 years ago. We don’t live in a socialist society where everyone makes the same. My end product is about $8.00. How can I sell enough to pay them all this money? I can only raise my prices so much. Between the sick pay requirements and wage increases which also must include payroll tax increase and workers comp increase, I will see a $30,000 increase in wage expenses by the end of 2020. That is not able to be made up in raising my prices because if I do, I will go out of business and no one will have a job. My team has now purchased 13 cars, I have paid out over a million dollars in wages since I opened. This is disposable dollars to young adults aged 15-23 and this disposable income went directly into our local economy. I employ a total equivilent of 10 full-time people and total numbers of employees are 16-18 in the summer, most part time (as I take back the college kids). How in the world did this become more than a small business owned by a local person in a small community? Gov. Murphy has played with the definitions of a small business and shot all of NJ business in the foot. The exceptions are so limited, it precludes me from wanting to do business here-and I’m a democrat Jersey native!

    • Sam says:


    • Stephen Hanft says:

      I wish you had been given the opportunity to testify this to the Legislature. All of the Democratic members of the Legislature and Governor Murphy should read the entire heartfelt story that you just wrote. It’s such a tragedy that good, compassionate small business owners, such as yourself, are going to be so cruelly harmed by this very bad law.

    • Bob says:

      So, this is your fault for voting democrat.