January 2023: New Jersey Legislature Passes Bill to Set the Effective Date of the Amendments to the New Jersey WARN Act

24 Jan

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Update Applicable to:
All employers with 100 or more employees in the state of New Jersey.

What happened?
On January 10, 2023, Governor Murphy signed new bill A4768 into law, which amends the effective date of amendments to the Millville Dallas Airmotive Plant Job Loss Notification Act (“NJ WARN”) that was originally passed in January 2020.

What are the details?
Effective April 10, 2023, all covered employers must provide 90 days of advance notice of a covered mass layoff or plant closing. It redefines “mass layoff” to mean the termination of at least 50 full- or part-time employees at or reporting to any establishment or group of establishments within the state, as opposed to just a single establishment.

The NJ WARN Act defines covered employers as all employers with 100 or more employees, including both part-time and full-time employees.

Employers must also provide severance for all terminated employees, even if the statutory notice is provided. The required severance is one week of pay for each full year of employment (in addition to any other severance paid for any reason). Previously severance was only required as a penalty if the employer failed to give the proper notice.

In addition, employers will also be required to pay an additional four weeks of severance on top of the one week per year of service if the statutory notice of 90 days is not provided. This penalty will be applied even if an employer provides 89 days’ notice.

The NJ WARN Act also permits lawsuits for compensatory damages, which includes claims for lost wages (capped at the amount of severance pay required under the NJ WARN Act), benefits, and other remuneration, plus the recovery for reasonable attorneys’ fees and costs. The remedies available to employees can be in addition to those available under the federal Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act (WARN). Where an employer violates both WARN and the NJ WARN Act, the employee gets the higher number of damages available under both of these laws.

For more information, please see the links below:

A4768

NJ WARN Act

Article 1Article 2Article 3

What do employers need to do?
Employers should review the links above and take proactive steps to ensure they will be ready for the implementation on April 10, 2023.

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