Offsetting Rent from Wages

Generally, rent may not be credited against the minimum wage without a voluntary written agreement between the employee and the employer. In other words, the amount of the rental offset taken from an employee's wages cannot bring the hourly rate below the legal minimum wage without a written agreement.

However, regardless of the existence of a voluntary written agreement, if an employer is indeed using the rental amount credited to meet minimum wage obligations, the amount of the rental credit must not be more than the following: (1) Two-thirds of the ordinary rental value but never more than $790.67 per month for single manager apartments and (2) Where a couple are both employed by the employer, two-thirds of the ordinary value but never more than $1,169.59 per month. (All listed amounts effective as of January 1, 2022.)

An employer who has failed to adhere to these limitations or who has otherwise failed to implement a voluntary written agreement as required, may be liable to the affected employee for not only the amount of wages unpaid as a result of the unlawful offset, but also for penalties, interest, and reimbursement of reasonable attorney fees and costs.