On May 4, 2017, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio signed into law new legislation making it an “unlawful discriminatory practice” for employers to inquire about or rely on a prospective employee’s salary history during the hiring process and when making hiring decisions.
As previously reported on April 24, 2017, the law – intended to reduce gender-based wage disparities – will take effect on October 31, 2017. The New York City Commission on Human Rights will enforce this law and is expected to promulgate rules to implement the law prior to the effective date. The Commission may impose civil penalties of up to $125,000 for an unintentional violation of the law and up to $250,000 for an intentional malicious violation of the law.
Notwithstanding limited exceptions, employers should advise recruiters and hiring managers to avoid any inquiries into a job applicant’s “salary history,” which is defined to include “wage[s], benefits or other compensation.” Employers should also revise any employment applications or other company documents to remove any inquiries regarding an applicant’s salary history.
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