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New Jersey Increases Minimum Wage For Long-Term Care Facility Staff As COVID-19 Cases Continue To Rise

1.15.21

COVID-19 has had a significant and deadly impact on some of New Jersey’s most vulnerable citizens who reside and work at long-term care facilities, such as nursing homes. On September 16, 2020, Governor Phil Murphy signed a package of laws to address issues at long-term care facilities that came to light during the pandemic. This includes a minimum wage increase for employees who provide direct care to residents of these facilities.

In 2019, New Jersey enacted a law to increase the minimum wage to $15 per hour effective January 1, 2024.  Effective November 1, 2020, however, New Jersey’s minimum wage law requires that long-term facility direct care staff members be paid $3 more than the prevailing minimum wage rate:

Effective Date

NJ Minimum Wage

NJ Minimum Wage for Long-Term Care Facility Direct Care Staff Members

January 1, 2020

$11

$14 (as of Nov 1, 2020)

January 1, 2021

$12

$15

January 1, 2022

$13

$16

January 1, 2023

$14

$17

January 1, 2024

$15

$18

A “long-term care facility direct care staff member” is defined as “any health care professional licensed or certified pursuant to Title 26 or Title 45 of the Revised Statutes who is employed by a long-term care facility and who provides personal care, assistance, or treatment services directly to residents of the facility in the course of the professional’s regular duties.” Therefore, employees of long-term care facilities who do not provide direct care are not entitled to the enhanced minimum wage.

If you have any questions about New Jersey’s minimum wage laws and how these changes may impact your business, please contact your Fisher Phillips attorney or any attorney in our New Jersey office. Make sure you are subscribed to Fisher Phillips’ Alert System to get the most up-to-date information.


This Legal Alert provides an overview of a specific state law. It is not intended to be, and should not be construed as, legal advice for any particular situation.

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