Find out more about the pay lag, the overtime cap, and what happens when you leave your job.
If you are paid an annual salary, divide your annual salary by the number of days in the current fiscal year* (365 for a regular year or 366 for a leap year) and multiply by 14 (days in a pay period).
*The City's fiscal year begins on July 1 of the previous calendar year and ends on June 30 of the current calendar year. For example, fiscal year 2023 begins July 1, 2022 and ends June 30, 2023. Fiscal year 2023 is not a leap year.
There are several reasons.
First, your W-2 shows your earnings during a calendar year and includes any premium pay or back pay you may have earned in addition to your regular pay. Your salary may change during the year or you may not work or be paid for the entire year.
Second, your W-2 shows accumulated earnings from the full pay periods that fall in the calendar year. There are usually 26 pay days in a calendar year. This accounts for 364 days of the calendar year (14 days per pay period x 26 pay periods = 364 days). In certain years there are 27 pay days in the calendar year. Your salary and biweekly rate, however, are based on the actual number of days in the year, 365 or 366, which accounts for a discrepancy of at least one or two days between your W-2 and annual salary.
Third, your earnings may be adjusted for pre-tax programs and certain benefits such as deferred compensation and the medical spending conversion program on your W-2 and show taxable earnings instead of total gross earnings.
For most City agencies, your leave balances are indicated on your pay statement. The "as of" date is based on a two-week lag. If you want to know your exact balances, do the following: Subtract any time you used and add any compensatory time you earned after the "as of" date that appears on your pay statement. Check the dates that accruals show up on your pay statement, and add accruals for the prior month(s) that are not on your pay statement.
Most employees receive an annual salary and are paid every two weeks on Friday. If you are one of these employees, you are paid for a two-week period up to and including the Saturday before pay day. This constitutes a one-week lag. Your pay was calculated one week before pay day and included your regular pay for both weeks of the pay period.
However, exceptions to your regular pay, including premium pay for overtime, shift differentials, or work on holidays during the second week of the pay period, were not reported until after your pay was calculated. These exceptions are adjusted on the following paycheck, resulting in a two-week lag for exceptions. You can see how the pay lag works on our pay calendar.
If you are paid on an hourly or per diem basis, your pay reflects days worked up to and including two Saturdays before pay day, constituting a two-week lag.
If you are paid weekly, your pay reflects days worked up to and including the Saturday before pay day, constituting a one-week lag. Exceptions to regular pay, including premium pay for overtime, shift differentials, or work on holidays, are paid on a two-week lag.
When you leave or stop working, you receive pay one or two weeks after your last day worked because of the lag from your last pay period. This lag affects most employees and is the reason why it appears that your pay was held when you started working. If you receive an annual salary and are paid biweekly, your pay reflects regular pay for a two-week period up to and including the Saturday before pay day. This constitutes a one-week lag. Exceptions, including premium pay for overtime, shift differentials, or work on holidays, are on a two-week lag.
If you are paid on an hourly or per diem basis, your pay reflects days worked up to and including two Saturdays before pay day, constituting a two-week lag. Due to the lag, you will receive pay two or three weeks after you stop working.
If you are paid weekly, your pay reflects days worked up to and including the Saturday before pay day, constituting a one-week lag. Due to the lag, you will receive pay one week after you stop working. If you earned overtime or any other premium pay during the last week you worked, you will receive pay for these exceptions two weeks after you stop working.
The overtime cap is a limitation on the payment for overtime and applies to employees covered by the Citywide Agreement.
If the sum of your annual salary rate (including any additions to gross such as a longevity differential or a service increment) and any one-time, shift differential, or other premium pay you received in a calendar year exceeds the cap amount contained in the Citywide Agreement, you can no longer be paid for overtime worked. Instead, you will receive compensatory time at the rate of one hour for each hour worked.
However, the overtime cap will not apply if the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) mandates payment for overtime worked or if your agency has been granted an overtime waiver by the Office of Labor Relations.
The most recent overtime caps are as follows:
There are separate payrolls that serve six groups of employees of the Department of Education:
Pedagogues, covered by the United Federation of Teachers (UFT) and Council of Supervisors and Administrators (CSA), as well as pedagogic managers, including Superintendents and Deputy Superintendents, are paid on a semi-monthly basis. There are 24 pay periods in a year including 20 service periods (September - June) and four vacation periods (July - August).
The usual pay days are the first and 16th of each month. There is no payroll lag. For example, the pay you receive on June 16 covers the period June 1 through June 15. To determine your semimonthly gross entitlement, divide your annual salary by 24 payments.
Per Diem service refers to licensed pedagogic personnel serving on a day-to-day basis in a school and/or any of its programs. Employees serving on a Per Diem basis are commonly referred to as substitute teachers. The Per Diem Payroll is a semi-monthly payroll. Paychecks are mailed directly to the employee's home on a semi-monthly schedule. Daily rates are contractual and are based on the employee's salary step and differentials, if applicable.
The Per Session Payroll is used to pay all pedagogic employees on an hourly or per session basis. Service is rendered outside of the regular school day or during the summer months. Payments are processed at hourly contractual rates each month. Paychecks are mailed directly to the employee's home on a semi-monthly schedule.
Hourly employees represented by DC37, Local 372, IBT 237, and Co-op Students are paid biweekly. The pay period covers 14 days which begin on a Wednesday and end on a Tuesday. Payment is generated on a Thursday, 16 days after the pay period end date. Payments to hourly employees are based on the number of hours worked during a specific payroll period.
A semi-monthly payroll serves the United Federation of Teachers (UFT) Annual Educational Paraprofessionals and the Per-Diem (Substitute) Paraprofessionals. There are 24 pay periods in a year including 20 service periods (September - June) and four vacation periods (July - August). The usual pay days are the 1st and 16th of each month. For annual educational paraprofessionals there is no payroll lag. For example, the pay you receive on June 16 covers the period June 1 through June 15. To determine your semimonthly gross entitlement, divide your annual salary by 24 payments.
Substitute paraprofessionals are paid on a positive basis for each day worked. As a result, there is a one payroll period lag. For example, the pay you receive on June 16 covers the period May 16 through May 31.
Administrative employees, serving in titles that are classified as civil service, are paid on a biweekly basis. The payroll covers a period of 14 days, which begin on a Sunday and end on a Saturday. There is a one-week lag for annual and two-week lag for hourly employees. Administrative employees are paid on the same schedule as the City's biweekly payroll and pay is calculated in the same way. You can refer to the pay calendar and also use the pay rate calculator to get a better understanding.
Most of the information above was excerpted from a series of payroll handbooks published by The Division of Financial Operations of the New York City Department of Education. DoE employees can refer to the handbooks for more information.