While this question was a common feature of the interview process, and even expected in years past, it’s now prohibited in many places. An increasing number of state and local governments, such as in Massachusetts, Hawaii, and New York City, have adopted laws that ban employers from requesting salary history information from job applicants. Proponents of these kinds of laws believe that when employers ask prospective employees for their salary history, it perpetuates disparities in pay based on gender and other factors as workers shift from one job to another. Ultimately, the goal of this kind of legislation is to eliminate pay discrimination among women, minorities, and other historically underpaid workers.
Legislation is changing quickly and many states are moving rapidly to respond. To help you understand your local market, we have listed the states and localities that have put such legislation into effect, and two states that has done the opposite. We will update this article as more states and localities pass similar laws, executive orders, and ordinances – so be sure to check back frequently.
There are currently 17 state-wide salary history bans (including the commonwealth of Puerto Rico), 17 local bans, 2 laws prohibiting bans, and 1 legal challenge to a ban in the United States.
*This content is not legal advice. For legal advice, please contact your attorney.