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Wage theft: $14.8 million stolen from New York workers

Each year workers across the state of New York are not paid the full compensation they are owed. As WHAM reports, almost $15 million was not paid out to New York workers in the first six months of 2017.  

The New York Department of Labor is returning the stolen wages to the more than 21,000 people who had some of their compensation withheld illegally. This is called wage theft, and it has many forms. When an employee is not paid the legal minimum wage, not given a paycheck outside of the tips they earn or denied overtime pay for work over 40 hours a week, they are victims of wage theft. Workers who find themselves in such a situation can make a wage theft complaint. Last year, the New York Department of Labor was ultimately able to return $26.4 million to workers who had been denied their full pay.

Expect more real estate transactions involving new construction

In Brooklyn, New York, many buyers embrace the charm associated with the historic townhouses in the borough. For instance, they like homes with plenty of wood details, high ceilings and herringbone floors. However, those interested in completing residential real estate transactions are becoming increasingly interested in eco-friendly, high-technology living that is much more affordable.

Up until a few years ago, building single-family residences in the Brooklyn area was very rare due to the economics of doing so. However, the prices of existing townhomes in this area have skyrocketed. Thus, building homes has become much more attractive.

Several real estate transactions highlighted in New York

New York continues to be a bustling city economically, including in the area of real estate. Both residential and commercial real estate is in demand this year, with many real estate transactions having already taken place or are currently in the works. A few of the biggest real estate projects that are coming to New York City area in particular are commercial ones.

One of the biggest is a mixed-use project slated for Long Island City. The project is expected to span almost a million square feet. The Durst Organization, which is planning this project, plans to build a whopping 763 rental units along with commercial space spanning more than 8,700 square feet. This property was purchased for $175 million.

An overview of New York’s security deposit laws

As someone who rents property in New York, you probably want to minimize your risks and expenditures by finding trustworthy, reliable tenants. Even those who seem dependable initially sometimes drop the ball, however.

Collecting a security deposit can protect you if a tenant causes damage to one of your rental properties. So, before you rent out your property, know the following about the state’s laws regarding security deposits.  

Real estate transactions booming in suburbia New York

The current trend in New York is for city dwellers to migrate north. This is taking place because they are in search of less costly homes or even second homes. As a result, one county in particular, Putnam County, experienced one of its highest rates of residential real estate transactions in the past 11 years.

Specifically, Putnam County witnessed its second-highest count of second-quarter sales in the real estate market in recent years. It saw a whopping 266 home sales during the second quarter, an increase of more than 21 percent during the first quarter of the year 2017. This figure was second to that of the second quarter of last year -- 269 -- which was the largest number of sales since the year 2006.

New York sees jump in luxury real estate transactions

The sales of luxury property in the Hamptons in New York are on the rise. The increase in luxury real estate transactions in this part of the Empire State is the result of today's buoyant stock market. In fact, there have been four closings over $20 million during the three months ending in June, compared with no such closings occurring within the same time period in 2016.

The Hamptons, which are where the wealthy in New York often go to spend their weekends, include the villages of Bridgehampton, East Hampton and Southampton on Long Island. Just as the number of $20 million-plus closings has gone up, closings ranging from $10 million to more than $19 million jumped from four to 10 during the second quarter this year. All of the 14 higher-end Hamptons sales except for one that occurred during this period took place in the above mentioned three towns.

Are you owed more breaks?

As a worker in New York, you have certain protections in place that ensure you won't be treated unfairly -- like being denied food or rest breaks. Knowing guidelines such as these can help you spot signs of illegal break denial and fight against it.

The New York State Department of Labor (DOL) has meal period guidelines available on their site. This can be used to show how many meal breaks any employee should get, from management to white- and blue-collar workers. Extremely short meal periods of 20 minutes can only be offered after the DOL has investigated and issued a permit. Average shortened meal periods are considered to be 30 minutes, and are only applicable if the shorter time doesn't cause you any inconveniences.

3 common landlord mistakes to avoid

Being a landlord is a significant responsibility. When faced with multiple demands, it can be tempting to rush through certain steps to move onto the next task. While making some mistakes is normal, you can avoid many with research and preparation. Do not underestimate the complexities you will face in terms of tenant disputes, insurance policies and local laws.

If you skip out on any of these responsibilities, you could end up in financial or legal trouble. Keep reading for some top tips on common landlord mistakes and how to avoid them.

How to get rid of a federal tax lien

Paying taxes in New York can be a burden, but not paying them can lead to serious consequences. One way that the government will attempt to secure payment from you is by placing a federal tax lien on your property. We at the Law Office of Louis D. Stober, Jr., can not only help you understand what this lien means, but also how you can get rid of it.

 

What risks do independent contractors face?

As an independent contractor in New York, you have both benefits and drawbacks to your position. At the Law Offices of Louis D. Strober, JR., we work to provide you with information and facts that you can use to help prepare yourself for, and prevent, the more severe risks and downsides to contracting.

When working as an independent contractor, there are a number of protections you won't have that you likely would have if you were a more traditional employee. For example, you likely won't have health insurance or access to any of the benefits that employees of the company you're contracted to may have. This can be a big downside to many, especially if you rely on benefits to make up for slow work periods, or if you're new to working as a contractor.

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