Last week, the New York State Legislature passed a bill prohibiting employers from asking about the salary history of prospective and current employees. Aimed at curtailing wage discrimination and pay disparity, the bill applies broadly. The bill, in its current form, applies to all employers along with recruiters or similar entities that connect applicants with employers.

Under the bill, an employer may not consider wage or salary history in deciding whether to (1) offer employment, (2) promote or (3) determine an employee’s wage or salary. It would also prohibit making disclosure of wage or salary history a pre-requisite for an interview, consideration for an offer, continuing employment, or a promotion.

The only way an employer may obtain this information is if the individual voluntarily offers the information without prompting.  In such an instance, the employer may inquire and confirm the wage or salary history.  The bill includes an anti-retaliation provision, and permits aggrieved  applicants/employees to seek damages, injunctive relief and attorney’s fees.

Governor Cuomo has expressed public support for this measure, and will likely sign it into law.  We will be sure to keep you updated.