Excerpted from a Snell & Wilmer LLP Blog by John Lomax, Brian Mills, Kevin Brown, Delilah Cassidy and Caitlin White

The continuing trend of state and local government regulating aspects of the employment relationship continues, and this time the focus is on pay transparency. These new laws require employers to disclose the pay they offer in job postings. Colorado was first on the scene in 2021. Since then, California and Washington have adopted new laws that take effect on January 1, 2023. And New York City recently adopted a law that took effect on November 1, 2022. The goal of this legislation is to provide more information to applicants about the expected pay ranges, and hopefully, to eliminate unequal treatment as applicants pursue employment opportunities.

We briefly address the scope of the four recent laws, but each law is different, and some laws include components that are much broader than pay transparency.

California’s pay transparency law goes into effect on January 1, 2023.

Washington’s pay transparency law will go into effect on January 1, 2023. Employers who engage in any business, industry or profession in the state of Washington must comply.

New York City
New York City’s pay transparency law went into effect on November 1, 2022. The law does not apply to jobs that will not be performed in New York City.

Colorado’s pay transparency law, the Equal Pay for Equal Work Act (EPEW), went into effect on January 1, 2021. EPEW applies to any job to be performed in Colorado and has also been interpreted to apply to remote workers who may reasonably perform work in Colorado.

Although ensuring compliance with pay transparency laws may cause initial headaches for HR departments, experts say that these laws will help streamline hiring processes and result in fewer cases of candidates declining positions after learning the offered salary. Additionally, job postings are more likely to be viewed if a salary range is included. As new laws take effect, it’s important for multi-state employers to remain vigilant and ensure that all job postings, even those published by third parties, comply with various state laws.

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