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New York City to Implement New Wage Transparency Law

January 10, 2022

On December 15, 2021, the New York City Council passed a new bill which will amend the current New York City Human Rights Law.  The new law which is scheduled to go into effect in April 2022, will require employers to declare the minimum and maximum salary for any position located in New York City.  It will cover not only new job postings but all promotion or transfer opportunities, too.  The last hurdle for the bill was the possibility of new Mayor, Eric Adams, vetoing it before a January 14th deadline, a move which he chose not to make.  So, what does this mean for New York City employers?

This recent action is its latest effort to promote wage equity among New York City workers.  California, Colorado, Connecticut, Maryland and Rhode Island already have similar legislation and it is believed with New Yok City’s implementation of this new concept, wage transparency laws could become the new standard in trying to combat wage inequities on a national scale.

The new bill requires employers to make a good faith effort to determine the wage range for a position, at the time of its posting.  Failure to provide the salary range at the time of posting will be deemed a violation of the New York City Human Rights Law and result in the finding of an unlawful discriminatory practice.  Rules and regulations to clarify the scope of the new law and its enforcement are expected in the coming months, including whether the law is intended to cover just jobs to be performed in NYC or more broadly all job posted and advertised in the City.

The intended and unintended consequences of this new legislation could be enormous and should not be taken lightly by City employers. Greater wage transparency will inevitably lead to increased wages, turnover, and more workplace turbulence caused by a shift in negotiating power from employer to employee. Some employers may be forced to quickly increase compensation for its current staff to stave off mass resignations of under compensated employees.  It also may cause more labor unrest if employees loose trust in their employer based on wage gaps they never suspected. 

Now is a good time to evaluate the compensation of your staff and identify any possible problem areas that may need to be addressed.  We don’t recommend waiting until April to find out you are at risk of having a major staffing problem.  Start to mitigate any potential problems now while time is still on your side and prepare for harder negotiations and difficult conversations come this April.

We will continue to monitor future developments regarding the status and implementation of the bill and update our readers accordingly. 

Brody and Associates regularly advises management on complying with the latest local, state and federal employment laws.  If we can be of assistance in this area, please contact us at info@brodyandassociates.com or 203.454.0560.