The most common length of pay periods in the United States is semi-monthly. This means that employees are paid at least twice each month. When adopting the semi-monthly pay period model, employers may choose to pay workers on alternating Fridays, or on set days each month.
Other common pay periods are weekly and monthly. Some states have laws setting the maximum length of a pay period, requiring businesses to pay employees at least semi-monthly. Other areas allow longer pay periods. Many employers consider their cash flow and the business' average monthly budget when deciding how long to make payroll periods.