NYC Amends Human Rights Law Prohibiting Employers From Asking Salary History Of Applicants

New York City employers need to be aware an amendment to the New York City Human Rights Law will go into effect on October 31, 2017. This amendment will prohibit employers in the city from asking for salary history information of applicants during the hiring process. 

Specifically, this new amendment prohibits employers from:

  • “Inquiring about” an applicant’s salary history throughout the entire employment process; and/or
  • Relying on the salary history of a job applicant when determining an applicant’s salary amount at any stage in the employment process, including when negotiating a contract. 

Activities that are permissible under this new law are discussions regarding the proposed or anticipated salary for the position, as well as the salary expectations of an applicant. Other permissible activities include:

  • Asking about “objective measures” of an applicant’s productivity
  • Discussing whether the applicant will be forfeiting equity or deferred compensation by taking the position
  • Consider an employee’s salary history if the applicant’s disclosure is made “voluntarily and without prompting.”
  • Employer can consider prior salary history of current employee who is seeking an internal transfer or promotion. 

Moving forward, employers should review all hiring documents to ensure salary history questions are not included. Considering how swiftly various ban the box laws or laws prohibiting questions about salary history are getting incorporated by states and municipalities across the nation, employers that have offices nationally should strongly consider reviewing and modifying all documents for all locations. 

It’s vital to be proactive and stay ahead of changes to employment law. By being proactive, employers can avoid being caught unawares to possible expensive violations. 

Check out our resource page to access forms, information on legislation and compliance, and review our FAQ page. 

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