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NYC Litigation Blog

Friday, June 9, 2017

NYC Employers Should Review Their Hiring Practices

What should NYC employers know about the new salary history law?

A new law signed this month by New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio may mean changes to some New York City employer’s hiring practices.  The bill prevents employers from asking job applicants about their salary history.  It will take effect on October 31, 2017.  Our NYC employment litigation lawyers discuss what you need to know about the new salary history law and what changes you should make to your hiring procedures.  

NYC’s Ban on Employer Inquiries into Salary History

Under the new law, it will constitute unlawful discrimination if an employer asks questions about a job applicant’s previous compensation under the New York City Human Rights Law.  However, an employee can voluntarily disclose their salary history, and the employer can consider this information.  

New York is one of several regions that has passed such a law, and legislatures in many states are considering passing similar legislation.  The purpose behind this new law is to narrow the wage gap that persists across the U.S.  Currently, female workers earn 87 cents for every dollar earned by their male counterparts.  This gap persists nationwide and across all industries.  

NYC Employers Must Review Hiring Procedures

New York City employers should closely review their hiring policies to ensure they comply with this new law.  Employers should make sure that no questions exist on hiring forms as to an applicant’s salary history.  Previous salary must be omitted from any background checks or verification inquiries.  Those in human resources and recruiters should be carefully informed as to the law surrounding voluntary disclosures.  Interviewers cannot prompt applicants whatsoever to solicit information about the applicant’s salary history.  

Failure to comply with this latest update to NYC’s comprehensive Human Rights Law could result in serious legal penalties.  Employers must take care to ensure they refrain from any questioning about salary history or they could face litigation and charges of employment discrimination.  Employers with questions or concerns about the new law should consult with an employer discrimination lawyer as soon as possible.


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