New York Debtor & Creditor Law
Wages and Commissions and Preferred Claims
1. In all distribution of assets under all assignments made in pursuance of this article, the wages or salaries actually owing to the employees of the assignor or assignors at the time of the execution of the assignment for services rendered within three months prior to the execution of the assignment, not exceeding one thousand dollars to each employee, and after payment of the foregoing, all claims for cash deposits not exceeding three hundred dollars made and left with an assignor or assignors on account of purchases at retail of merchandise or services, where such deposits were made within six months before the execution of the assignment and such merchandise has not been delivered or the services performed, shall be preferred before any other debt except wages or salaries as aforesaid; and should the assets of the assignor or assignors not be sufficient to pay in full all the claims preferred, pursuant to this section, they shall be applied to the payment first of wages or salaries to the full amount of each such wage or salary, and thereafter pro rata to payment of such cash deposits.
2. For the purposes of this section, wages or salaries shall mean;
(a) all compensation and benefits payable by an employer to or for the account of the employee for personal services rendered by such employee. These shall specifically include but not be limited to salaries, overtime, vacation, holiday and severance pay; employer contributions to or payments of insurance or welfare benefits; employer contributions to pension or annuity funds; and any other moneys properly due or payable for services rendered by such employee. Vacation and severance pay due and owing at the time of the filing of an assignment, or which became due and owing after the filing of an assignment, but prior to the closing of the estate, shall be considered as wages or salaries owed for services rendered within three months prior to the execution of the assignment, or
(b) commissions due traveling or city salesmen on salaries or commission basis, whole or part-time, whether or not selling exclusively for the assignor or assignors, and for the purpose of this section, traveling or city salesmen, shall include all such salesmen whether or not they are independent contractors selling products or services of the bankrupt with or without a drawing account or formal contract.