Over the previous two years, pay transparency legal guidelines have shortly unfold and turn into a subject of state legislatures nationwide. 

As pay transparency legal guidelines proceed to proliferate throughout the US, employers might want to think about modifying their strategy to job postings and promotional alternatives.  Pay transparency legal guidelines proceed to go in main states (and localities) throughout the nation, and New York appears more likely to be the subsequent state to affix the development.  As seen inside latest states’ legal guidelines, necessities below pay transparency legal guidelines is not going to stay restricted to applicant requests, as many employers assume.  As a substitute, these legal guidelines are being expanded to use to job postings for brand spanking new hires, promotions, and switch alternatives inside corporations as properly, which creates extra alternative for violations. 

Setting the Customary

In November of 2020, Colorado redirected the course of pay transparency legal guidelines inside the US.  Whereas Colorado didn’t enact the nation’s first pay transparency statute, Colorado amplified the necessities below such statutes and drastically elevated the obligations that corporations at the moment are required to satisfy.  Colorado’s enhanced obligations embrace the necessities that employers with any staff in Colorado (1) “make affordable efforts to announce, put up, or in any other case make identified” any promotional alternative to all present staff and (2) embrace compensation ranges and a basic description of advantages on all job postings for work tied to Colorado places or distant work performable wherever.  Whereas Colorado’s statute does include restricted exceptions, together with an exclusion for out-of-state jobs, lined employers should present all required compensation info on job postings except the work is performable solely at non-Colorado worksites.  As a result of slender interpretation of Colorado’s statute, employers with job postings open to distant staff situated wherever inside the US can be required to incorporate compensation ranges. 

The Newest

On June 3, 2022, New York grew to become the most recent state to go a pay transparency invoice.  New York’s statewide invoice comes simply months after New York Metropolis, amongst different New York localities, handed an analogous regulation.  New York State’s invoice requires employers with 4 or extra staff to reveal the compensation or a variety of compensation in any commercial for a job, promotion, or switch alternative that may or will probably be carried out, at the least partly, within the state of New York.  New York’s invoice defines “vary of compensation” as “the minimal and most annual wage or hourly vary of compensation for a job, promotion, or switch alternative that the employer in good religion believes to be correct on the time of the posting of an commercial for such alternative.”  New York’s invoice additionally requires employers to reveal job descriptions for the chance marketed, if such a job description exists.  Employers lined below New York State’s invoice, if enacted, will even be required to maintain and keep information, resembling “historical past of compensation ranges for every job, promotion, or switch alternative and the job descriptions for such positions, if such descriptions exist.” 

Sensible Concerns

Whereas many states don’t presently have pay transparency legal guidelines, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Maryland, Nevada, Rhode Island, and Washington have legal guidelines which are efficient or set to turn into efficient subsequent 12 months.  Among the many states which have enacted statutes, the necessities differ vastly.  Most states with pay transparency legal guidelines solely require that employers present a cost vary at later levels of the appliance course of and on the request of the applicant.  Nevertheless, Colorado raised the bar — requiring employers present a wage scale or wage vary with any job posting — and states passing pay transparency legal guidelines after Colorado look like conforming with Colorado’s tackle the protections mandatory for staff and candidates

Along with the dearth of uniformity inside state legal guidelines, state legislatures are passing more and more aggressive pay transparency measures, creating the strictest pay transparency regulation on the time of passage.  For instance, California, which has had a regulation on the pay transparency since 2018, is presently contemplating amendments to its pay transparency regulation to match Colorado’s extra stringent necessities and require extra public reporting about worker pay information.  As described above, New York’s invoice would undertake the extra stringent necessities of Colorado’s regulation whereas including necessities for job descriptions and commission-based pay as properly.

Distant work, whereas helpful to employers and staff in a myriad of the way, additionally creates points below pay transparency legal guidelines.  Distant employees set up obligations for employers below pay transparency legal guidelines.  Whereas employers might not do enterprise inside a state with such legal guidelines, using distant staff inside that state’s borders locations an employer inside the protection of the states pay transparency regulation, amongst different employment legal guidelines.  Additional, sure employers promoting positions with an possibility for candidates to work in any of the 50 states should be sure that the commercial meets the necessities of relevant pay transparency legal guidelines (even when the employer doesn’t particularly goal a state with these rigorous necessities).  Makes an attempt to particularly exclude residents of Colorado from an employer’s applicant pool almost about distant job affords have been deemed inapplicable by Colorado’s Division of Labor and Employment.  Comparable utility must be anticipated from different states adopting pay transparency legal guidelines.


As extra states proceed to observe Colorado’s course, employers — particularly these with multi-state operations — ought to proceed to observe developments in all states during which they function or make use of people.  Failure to take action might topic corporations to investigations and prosecution by state businesses, along with progressive civil penalties related to violations of state and native legal guidelines.  Accordingly, employers ought to seek the advice of with authorized counsel to find out the suitable measures to implement and guarantee they adjust to the assorted pay transparency necessities for any relevant legal guidelines.

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