Government, Money, Resources

Pay Equity: States with pay transparency laws

March 29, 2023 by

It’s clear that pay transparency will continue to increase in the U.S. A recent report by Indeed, a leading global hiring platform, show more than 40% of US job listings with salary information in 2023, a 137% increase from 2020, in States with and without pay transparency laws. More States are requiring employers to provide candidates with clear salary information. While there are some variations in the laws, like whether or not a candidate must request a pay range for the employer to provide it, it is a step toward pay equity.

Photo: Gerd Altmann (Pixabay)

New York – New York City (2022)

  • As of November 1, 2022, employers advertising jobs in New York City will need to include a good faith salary range for every job, promotion and transfer opportunity.
  • The “Pay Transparency Law” (Law) applies to all employers with 4 or more employees or one or more domestic workers, as long as at least one of those employees works in New York City.
  • The Law applies to any advertisement for a job, promotion or transfer opportunity that can or will be performed, in whole or in part, in New York City.
  • Note: New York also enacted the Salary History Ban, the law prohibits all employers – both public and private – from asking prospective or current employees about their salary history and compensation.

California (2016)

  • California was the first state in the U.S. to legally require employers to provide the pay range for a job – if the candidate asks for it after the first interview.
  • Passed in 2016, and updated annually, California’s Equal Pay Act prevents employers from asking about candidates’ previous salaries.

Colorado (2021)

  • Since January 2021, Colorado’s Equal Pay for Equal Work Act requires employers to list the pay range and benefits for every job opening.
  • Employers are required to post pay for any remote job that could potentially be performed in the state
  • Employers must also notify current employees of all promotion opportunities and keep records of job descriptions and wages.

Connecticut (2021)

  • In effect since October 2021, employers are required to provide a salary range for all extended offers, or before then, if the candidate asks for it.
  • Employers in Connecticut have to provide a pay range for any instance where someone is moving into a new role (applies to transfers and promotions).

Maryland (Updated 2020)

  • Passed in 2016 and updated in 2020, Maryland’s Equal Pay for Equal Work Act in 2016, requires employers to provide pay ranges to candidates upon request.
  • Employers in Maryland are prohibited from asking candidates about their previous salary history.

Nevada (2021)

  • Senate Bill 293 is the legal precedent for pay transparency in the state of Nevada. Effective October 2021, Nevada employers must provide a salary range to candidates after the first interview automatically.
  • Employers are required to provide a pay range for transfers and promotions upon an employee’s request.

Rhode Island (2021)

  • Passed in 2021, the Rhode Island Equal Pay Law requires employers to provide candidates with a pay range if the interviewee requests it—starting in January of 2023.
  • This will apply to transfers and promotions as well.
  • Employers are legally required to disclose the salary range for a role before compensation is discussed with the candidate.

Washington (2019)

  • Washington’s Equal Pay and Opportunities Act in 2019 requires employers to provide a salary range after they have made an offer to a candidate upon request.
  • The same goes for transfers and promotions.
  • If an employee in Washington state asks for a pay range, the employer must provide one.

Related: States and territories with salary history bans

State and local governments are increasingly adopting laws and regulations that prohibit employers from requesting salary history information from job applicants. The laws are aimed at ending the cycle of pay discrimination and address gender pay inequities.

Those States and Territories include: Alabama, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Mississippi, Missouri, New Jersey, New York, Nevada, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Puerto Rico, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington.

Helpful Resources

See degree of pay transparency by Metro Area and Occupation (Indeed)

Pay Equity Infographic (SHRM, the Society for Human Resource Management)

More pay transparency and visual Map

Salary history ban map and details

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