NC Employers: 3 Important Changes to Pay Notice and Final Wages for Separated Employees

By Nicole Murphey

On July 8, 2021, North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper signed Senate Bill 208 (SB 208), which amended portions of the NC Wage and Hour Act regarding pay notice requirements and payment of final wages to separated employees.  

SB 208 is immediately effective, and employers should advise their payroll personnel of these new requirements

  • NC Employers must now provide WRITTEN notice to employees at the time of hire stating (1) promised wages and (2) the day and location of payment for wages if delivering payment in person or the method of payment if using a different form, such as direct deposit or mail. 
    • What changed? Previously, employers could give verbal notice of this information. 
  • NC Employers must provide written notice at least ONE PAY PERIOD prior to any decreases in promised wages. 
    • What changed? Previously, employers could notify employees of decreases in promised wages with only 24 hours’ written notice.  (No advance notice is required for increasing wages.)
  • NC Employers must remit payment of an employee’s final wages through the regular payroll method previously elected by the employee, unless the employee makes a written request for a live check to be sent by trackable mail. 
  • Increased Penalties: Employers shall be subject to a civil penalty of up to $250 per employee with the maximum not to exceed $2,000 per violation
    • What changed? Previously, it was a maximum penalty of $2,000 per investigation

NC Wage & Hour Act (NCWHA) (N.C. Gen. Stat. §95-25.1 et seq.)