That's when a change in the state constitution kicks in raising the state's minimum wage from $7.25 to $8.25 per hour.
Six in 10 voters approved the increase in November.
It also guarantees future minimum wage hikes to the lowest paid workers as the cost of living rises.
A dozen other states are raising their minimum wage above the federal minimum of $7.25 on Jan. 1.
President Obama has proposed increasing the federal minimum wage, but Congress has not agreed.
New Jersey Policy Perspective, a liberal think tank based in Trenton, says 254,000 workers will see a wage boost in their next paycheck.
Most of them are working adults, not minors.