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New Mexico Employment Law Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law and Real Estate Law for New Mexico on
Q: What do I do if I am a first year teacher and my principal is refusing to give me my final paycheck?

The principal says I have to come in and hold an IEP meeting before getting my check. School ended on May 23rd and our Special ed coordinator closed down our files on the 24th.

Trent A. Howell
Trent A. Howell
answered on Oct 31, 2017

In general, an employer must, on regular, bi-monthly paydays, fully pay employees for all work done within the prior two weeks. NM Stat § 50-4-2 (2015). If the employee is discharged, the employee must make the payment within five days of the discharge. NM Stat § 50-4-4 (2015). If the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law and Workers' Compensation for New Mexico on
Q: my employer is having financial troubles and has took away my vacation & sick leave. what are my options? legal?

I have 200 hrs vacation and 24 hrs sick leave saved up. My employer is a small business (5 employees) in new mexico that has recently downsized dramatically from financial issues (debts). ive been with him for over 6 yrs. I recently got sick for two days from an E coli outbreak in the cities water... Read more »

Trent A. Howell
Trent A. Howell
answered on Oct 31, 2017

In general, for work already done, an employer must pay whatever rate of pay and benefits were agreed upon before the work was done. Unless the employer has also entered an agreement to continue a rate of pay or benefits for a certain period of time into the future, an employer can change the rate... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for New Mexico on
Q: I work as a store manager for an automotive parts company does the salary go by new law of 913 a week minimum.
Trent A. Howell
Trent A. Howell
answered on Oct 31, 2017

While there have been recent bills in the New Mexico Senate and House of Representatives to raise it, in general, the state-wide minimum wage by state law is still $7.50 per hour. NM Stat § 50-4-22 (2016). But some cities (e.g., Albuquerque, Las Cruces, and Santa Fe) impose a higher minimum wage... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for New Mexico on
Q: I was fired the day after a work related injury on a false accusation. Can I file a lawsuit?

I injured my back at work and was giving a few days off. I live next to the bistro I worked in so I stopped by the next day on my way to the store and was asked to purchase a pack of cigarettes for a fellow employee. After delivering the cigarettes I returned home. I was then fired that night, on... Read more »

Trent A. Howell
Trent A. Howell
answered on Oct 31, 2017

There is a statute prohibiting employers from terminating employees "for the sole reason that that employee seeks workers' compensation benefits." New Mexico Workers’ Compensation Retaliation Statute, NMSA § 52-1-28.2. Whether and how it applies to you would depend on the details... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for New Mexico on
Q: Can employers give out your personal information

I took time off work for personal reasons and the assistant manager told managers of other businesses why i took off work and when i was coming back and all the things i was going through that i needed off for

Brian Lehman
Brian Lehman
answered on Feb 1, 2017

Generally, yes, managers can do this -- although it is not a good management practice obviously. Two exceptions would be if you have a contract with them, perhaps through an employee handbook, or if the manager is doing this to set up a hostile environment based on your sex or race or another... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Business Law and Employment Law for New Mexico on
Q: In NM, is it legal to allow independant contractors to wear the business logo of the company that hires them?

It sounds ridiculous to me, but someone has told me that it's illegal to allow independant contractors (massage therapists in this case) to wear t-shirts with the logo of the company that has hired them. The t-shirts are worn at events voluntarily by the contractors to help advertise for the... Read more »

Trent A. Howell
Trent A. Howell
answered on Aug 3, 2016

Someone is confusing the issue. The question is not whether it is "legal," but whether wearing a company logo may suggest an individual is an employee rather than an independent contractor of that company. There are different definitions and factors to determine "employee"... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for New Mexico on
Q: I quit my job does my ex boss have the right to pay me minimum wage even though I made more than that

I walked out one day after being at my job for 5 years. My boss would always say how she has the right to lower our pay to minimum wage if we Dont give a two week notice. I live in alb nm

Trent A. Howell
Trent A. Howell
answered on Apr 14, 2016

In general, for work already done, an employer must pay whatever rate of pay was agreed upon before the work was done. Unless the employer has also entered an agreement to continue a rate of pay for a certain period of time into the future, an employer can change the rate of pay going forward, but... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for New Mexico on
Q: It is allowed to pay youth participants in summer youth program stipends vs an hourly wage.

The program participants spend 3/4 of their time in a classroom setting the remainder is job shadowing. The duration of the program is approximately for six weeks (last two weeks of June and all of July)

Trent A. Howell
Trent A. Howell
answered on Apr 14, 2016

Depending on the nature and size of the employer, this question may involve both federal and state law. As to New Mexico law, the local agency responsible for enforcing minimum wage laws has posted some helpful information on its website:... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for New Mexico on
Q: How far back do background checks go?
Trent A. Howell
Trent A. Howell
answered on Apr 14, 2016

In addition to limitations under the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act, New Mexico Statute Section 56-3-6 generally places some limits on the information "credit bureaus" can list, such as limiting reporting of bankruptcies to no longer than 14 years, collection accounts no longer than 7... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for New Mexico on
Q: Do I have to repay a relocation package if I was misled into relocating?

I was told my plant in Pennsylvania would be shutting down soon, and that I would be doing the company a favor in Relocating to New Mexico. I agreed under the circumstances that my plant was shutting down. I had to sign a repayment agreement if I were to quit or get fired within 2 years. I quit... Read more »

Trent A. Howell
Trent A. Howell
answered on Apr 14, 2016

Generally, the answer would depend on the specific terms of your repayment agreement. In some situations, New Mexico does recognize a claim of "fraud in the inducement" of an agreement as grounds to void the agreement. Generally, New Mexico Statutes Section 50-4-2 prohibits an employer... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law and Workers' Compensation for New Mexico on
Q: I hurt my knee on the job on the FD and forced to resign, im on work comp, should I be getting a settlement?
Trent A. Howell
Trent A. Howell
answered on Apr 14, 2016

In certain situations, the New Mexico Workers' Compensation Act, NMSA § 52-1-28.2, prohibits the employer from retaliating/terminating/pressuring resignation after an employee sustains a workplace injury and/or makes a claim for Workers Compensation benefits. Whether it applies to you would... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Employment Law for New Mexico on
Q: Can my employer replace me with a new hire because I had to take two days off to undergo a medical procedure?

My employer recently got a new manager (he has been there for 3 weeks) I have worked at the company for 8 months (since it opened) and have had the exact same schedule since that point(I have documentation of this), and have never asked for a single day off. I requested two days off because I had... Read more »

Marshall Jason Ray
Marshall Jason Ray
answered on Mar 28, 2016

You will need to consult with an attorney where you can provide more details to determine what the legal implications are of your employer's actions. As a general rule, unless there is a contract stating otherwise (such as a collective bargaining agreement), an employer can fire and replace... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Employment Law for New Mexico on
Q: haven't got paid

never got paid by company overseeing fiber build in NM. I did some drafting for them. And they refuse to pay. Can you help?

Marshall Jason Ray
Marshall Jason Ray
answered on Mar 26, 2016

Did you do this on a contract basis or were you an employee (sometimes even if you were told you were a contractor, the law might consider you an employee)? You can report to the New Mexico Department of Workforce Solutions Wage and Hour Bureau. They will investigate employers who fail to pay... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Employment Law for New Mexico on
Q: Can my employer take my PTO Ive accrued in the year and 2 months I've been employed as a full time employee ?

I have been at my current job for A year and two months yesterday I was told that I'm being put on in 3 months probationary period because of my absences, in which 75% of them i have provided proof of court dates and physician appointments which they would tell me they didnt need a copy. My... Read more »

Marshall Jason Ray
Marshall Jason Ray
answered on Mar 26, 2016

It is not clear what you mean when you say you are now a part time employee even though your hours stay the same. You would need to provide more details, but the general rule in New Mexico is that issues related to accrual, use, or loss of vacation or sick leave are determined by your... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for New Mexico on
Q: Penalty for running business with employees with no registration to state of NM

Business doesn't need licence needs registered for lawn care

Marshall Jason Ray
Marshall Jason Ray
answered on Mar 26, 2016

It is not clear what you are asking. With few exceptions, any business in New Mexico with employees must register with multiple government entities. The business should have a Federal Employer Identification number (EIN) to facilitate federal payroll taxes and withholding. The business will also... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Employment Law for New Mexico on
Q: Is there a case of False Advertisement or Bait and Switch?

Here's the analogy:

I resigned a good job working as regular employee for hopefully a higher paying job closer to my home address.

I sent the definition of a baker to the boss and she said yes it is for a baker.

I asked her what the work schedule is and she said 8 AM... Read more »

Marshall Jason Ray
Marshall Jason Ray
answered on Mar 23, 2016

Is this a real scenario? You were hired as a baker and then reassigned to duties as a car mechanic? It is not clear from your description whether you have any legal claims. Employment in New Mexico is presumed at-will unless there is a contract stating otherwise. That means the employer does... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for New Mexico on
Q: this is a neptoism question...can 2 people that work for the same company and department date?
Marshall Jason Ray
Marshall Jason Ray
answered on Mar 19, 2016

This happens all of the time. Whether it is permitted or not is a matter of company policy. Government entities are subject to some anti-nepotism laws, but otherwise fraternization and nepotism are not legal issues but rather issues of company policy.

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for New Mexico on
Q: Are employers required to put employees on a schedule if they are on the payroll but company does not have labor hours

I currently operate a business but am facing the choice of either laying people off or keeping them on the payroll without scheduling any hours until financial situation improves. Just wanted to know if there was a minimal requirement for hours if an employee was on a current payrol

Marshall Jason Ray
Marshall Jason Ray
answered on Mar 18, 2016

If you do not have the work, you do not have to schedule employees for a minimum amount of hours unless you have entered into a contract that alters the presumptive at-will relationship. Even if you do have the work, you do not have to guarantee any worker a minimum number of hours. This answer... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Employment Law for New Mexico on
Q: If i signed a non compete agreement for a eyebrow threading company in New Mexico are there ways around it?
Mr. Michael O. Stevens
Mr. Michael O. Stevens
answered on Mar 1, 2016

Many times there are. I would seek out a local employment law attorney to review what the agreement says and what options you have.

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2 Answers | Asked in Civil Rights, Constitutional Law and Employment Law for New Mexico on
Q: My background was pulled and i was fired. An employee not with HR read and told me what was on it. Is it a Privacy Issue

I was terminated because of information on a background report. An employee told me i was under investigation for crimes and he informed me of what was on my background report. It isn't public record, i never knew about any allegations against me and had to find out from another employee about... Read more »

Robert Jason De Groot
Robert Jason De Groot
answered on Oct 14, 2015

To answer your question will require a bit of research on most attorneys parts. You need to actually go see one about this.

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