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Mar
2014
7

NY in 2013: 127K Misclassified Workers, $62M in Back Wages, $55M in Missing Unemployment Contributions

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In 2013, the state Department of Labor conducted 13,000 audits and investigations finding 127,000 workers had been misclassified.  The report found that their employers collectively owed over $55 million to unemployment contributions.  Misclassified workers were owed $62 million in back wages.  

The 12 industries with the highest incidence of misclassification were:

• Professional, Scientific and Technical Services;
• Food/Drink Services;
• Administrative and Support Services;
• Ambulatory Health Care Services;
• Construction;
• Educational Services;
• Performing Arts, Spectator Sports and Related Industries;
• Specialty Trade Contractors;
• Personal and Laundry Services;
• Couriers and Messengers;
• Motion Picture and Sound Recording Industries; and
• Amusement, Gambling and Recreational Industries.

According to the report, the Joint Enforcement Task Force on Employee Misclassification — a special initiative of the state — has identified 114,000 instances of employee misclassification and discovered nearly $1.8 billion in unreported wages.  The task force’s stated goals for 2014 include:

“…continuing to focus on unemployment insurance fraud and its prevention,” conducting “industry-specific proactive investigations in industries with a high incidence of misclassification,” and “working with other states to pursue employers that operate in multiple jurisdictions.”

The Joint Enforcement Task Force on Employee Misclassification is made up of the State Department of Taxation, State Department of Labor, State Workers’ Compensation Board, State Attorney General’s Office, and the Comptroller of the City of New York.

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