Following enactment of a similar law in Colorado in 2021, the New York City Council passed a bill on December 15, 2021 amending New York City’s Human Rights Law to require New York City employers to disclose the salary range of open positions in all advertised job postings. Mayor Eric Adams had until January 14, 2022 to veto the bill, but declined to do so, which means the law will take effect on May 15, 2022. The implications for New York City employers are far reaching.
What Disclosure is Required?
The bill mandates that employers in New York City include the minimum and maximum salary range that the employer would, in good faith at the time of posting, pay an employee for the advertised position. Not only does this requirement apply to external job postings, but to internal advertisements regarding promotion and transfer opportunities.
Who is Covered?
The bill covers all employers in New York City with four or more employees. Job advertisements for temporary employment at a temporary help firm are specifically excluded from the requirement.
How Will the Law be Enforced?
The New York City Human Rights Law already provides for civil penalties up to $125,000 for those who engage in unlawful discriminatory practices, and up to $250,000 for those who do so willfully, wantonly, or maliciously. Additionally, under the Human Rights law, aggrieved individuals, and the City’s Commission on Human Rights, are entitled to bring suit against an offending employer, which may subject the employer to additional non-monetary and monetary damages.
There are a number of unanswered questions presented by this new law. For example, how, if at all, does the law apply to employers who are physically located outside of New York City but who advertise for job openings in New York City? How, if it all, does the law apply to independent contractors or freelancers? And how, if at all, does the law apply to non-salaried positions? The New York City Commission on Human Rights is expected to issue guidance on the new law, which will hopefully address these and other open issues and provide greater clarity to employers. In the meantime, New York City employers should begin thinking about how they will comply with the law so that they are in a position to meet the law’s May 15, 2022 effective date.