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What Is the New Jersey Prevailing Wage Act?

In New Jersey, some workers are protected by the state’s prevailing wage laws. These are laws that govern the amount that contractors and subcontractors who perform work for the government must pay their workers for public works jobs.

Despite these rules, government contractors frequently violate them. If your government contractor employer has failed to pay you the prevailing wage for your job, the employment attorneys at Swartz Swidler might be able to help you.

Understanding the prevailing wage laws

Both the federal Davis-Bacon Act and the New Jersey Prevailing Wage Act were passed to protect workers who perform work on government projects. These laws help to determine the minimum amounts that must be paid to craftsmen, laborers and apprentices.

The laws require that the contractors who are awarded the projects submit certifications of compliance. The contractors who submit bids on government-funded contracts must pay the applicable registration fees and register with New Jersey before they will be eligible to win the bid.

Schedule an appointment today. Call (856) 685-7420 or

Schedule an appointment today.
Call (856) 685-7420 or

What are the prevailing wages?

The prevailing wage scale for each trade or craft is established by the New Jersey Commissioner of Labor and Workforce Development and are based on the established collective bargaining agreements for the trade in the area where the public work will be completed. The prevailing wages may vary by county, the experience of the worker and the type of work that will be performed. Since the rates frequently change, it is important that you make certain that you know the rate that should apply to you.

Public works projects that require the payment of the prevailing wage

Projects in New Jersey that are governed by the prevailing wage laws are those that meet a specific value and that are paid for in part or in whole through public funding. Municipal government contracts that are valued at a minimum of $15,444 are subject to the prevailing wage. For other public entities, the minimum is just $2,000. There are other requirements as well, including that the worksite must be at least 22,000 square feet and that 55 percent or more of the work must be performed on public property.

How the law is enforced in New Jersey

Government representatives perform paperwork audits and routine site visits to projects in the state that are subject to the prevailing wage laws. Workers who believe that their employers are violating the laws can file reports with the Division of Wage and Hour Compliance. If you file a report, you are protected against retaliation under the New Jersey Conscientious Employee Protection Act. If the Division finds that your employer violated the act, your employer may be fined up to $1,000 per incident. You are also able to get help from an experienced attorney to recover the compensation to which you are entitled. Contact Swartz Swidler today to learn more about your rights.

Most Frequently Asked Question: Do I Have A Case?

While it is true that every case is different, The law is pretty clear in most cases. The best way to determine if you have a case is to contact one of our attorneys. For more information check out the FAQ below or visit our FAQ Page

Most Frequently Asked Question:
Do I Have A Case?

While it is true that every case is different, The law is pretty clear in most cases. The best way to determine if you have a case is contact one of our attorneys. For more information on a just a few scenarios checkout the flip box FAQ below or visit our FAQ Page.

Our Locations

Cherry Hill Headquarters

1101 Kings Hwy N
Suite 402
Cherry Hill, New Jersey 08034

Phone: (856) 685-7420
Fax: (856) 685-7417

Philadelphia Satellite Office

123 South 22nd Street
Philadelphia, PA 19107

Phone: (215) 995-2733

Our Locations

Cherry Hill Headquarters

1101 Kings Hwy N
Suite 402
Cherry Hill, New Jersey 08034

Phone: (856) 685-7420
Fax: (856) 685-7417

Philadelphia Satellite Office

123 South 22nd Street
Philadelphia, PA 19107

Phone: (215) 995-2733