It Can Be Illegal for Massachusetts Employers to Pay Employees on the 1st &15th
Massachusetts overall has a great quality of life. It's one of the cleanest, safest, and nicest states to live in for a multitude of reasons. From beautiful mountains and beaches to thriving cities and downtowns, excellent public schools, and strong real estate markets, Massachusetts doesn't have much to complain about, even in the post-COVID job market.
Massachusetts has one of the lowest rates of unemployment in the country at just 2.6%. Only eight states have a lower percentage of unemployed residents than the Commonwealth.
In fact, Boston Massachusetts was recently named the fifth best place to find a job in the United States according to U.S. News and World Reports. Not only is Massachusetts a great place to try and find a job, but the pay isn't bad either. According to ZipRecruiter the average salary in Boston in 2023 is just over $80,000.
So Massachusetts is a great place to find and job with a pretty decent salary, but there are certain laws about HOW you get paid in Massachusetts.
Many folks get paid bi-weekly in the state of Massachusetts, but if you're getting paid on the 1st and 15th of every month, or any pay schedule that's anything other than every two weeks, your employer is in violation of state law.
According to Morse Law Firm, in Massachusetts, non-exempt employees must be paid at least weekly or biweekly (every two weeks) and both exempt and non-exempt employees must be paid within six days of the end of the pay period during which wages were earned.
Employers who instead pay non-exempt employees only semi-monthly (i.e. twice a month on the 1st and 15th or the 15th and 30th) potentially violate Massachusetts state laws in two ways: by paying less frequently than biweekly, and by failing to pay within six days of the end of the pay period.
How Often Are Employees Required to Pay Employees in Massachusetts
According to Massachusetts law, employees must pay hourly employees either weekly or biweekly. They can pay salaried employees semi-monthly and, if they voluntarily agree, monthly.
Employees who get paid bi-monthly, which is every other week will receive 26 paychecks per year, while employees who get paid semi-monthly, which is twice per month will only get paid 24 times in a year, which can again violate Massachusetts state laws.
There is one exception to this. Employees that are "exempt" (i.e. an executive or a professional exemption) can be paid on a semi-monthly basis, or if that exempt employee consents, on a monthly basis.
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