HR Alert

Massachusetts Issues Guidance on Amended Equal Pay Law

Amended Law Effective July 1, 2018

Massachusetts has issued new guidance regarding its amended equal pay law. An outline of the guidance is presented below.

New Guidance
The new guidance contains information on the following topics:

  • Covered employers and employees
  • Definitions of key terms (e.g., "comparable work" and "wages")
  • Permissible variations in pay
  • The prohibition against restricting employees' wage discussions
  • The prohibition against seeking salary history information
  • A checklist and guide for employers to assess compliance with the law

Click here to read the guidance. Additional resources, including a fact sheet and pay calculation tool, are also available.

Background
Employers are generally prohibited from discriminating in any way based on gender in the payment of wages, or from paying a person a salary or wage rate less than the rates paid to its employees of a different gender for comparable work. However, variations in wages are generally not prohibited if based upon certain factors.

The law also generally prohibits employers from requiring that an employee refrain from inquiring about, discussing, or disclosing his or her own wages or another employee's wages, and from seeking the wage or salary history from a prospective employee or a current or former employer.

The amended law, which takes effect July 1, 2018, contains additional details and prohibitions. Employers may also wish to view the state's equal pay provisions that are in effect prior to July 1, 2018.


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