Nicole Rice

Legislature bans salary history inquiries

By Nicole Rice, Policy Director, Government Relations

Capitol Update, Sept. 11, 2015

Employers may no longer be able to request prior salary history from job candidates under a CMTA-opposed measure that was approved by the State Legislature.

While the effort to reduce instances of wage discrimination is laudable, the challenge is how the Legislature chooses to implement the policy. The actual concern with regard to wage disparity should be the final compensation offered or paid to the applicant compared to those in the same job category.

However, irrespective of the many legitimate, non-discriminatory and legally-necessary reasons a manufacturer may have for seeking information regarding the prior compensation of an applicant, AB 1017 by Assembly Member Nora Campos (D-San Jose) simply bans such inquiries by private employers (excluding public employers) and exposes you to additional litigation under the state Labor Code’s Private Attorneys General Act.

This threat of litigation is unnecessary given the lack of ultimate harm to the job candidate, and to the extent that it does, there are already existing protections to preclude gender discrimination in compensation, including the Fair Employment and Housing Act and Title VII.

AB 1017 is headed to the Governor for consideration. CMTA encourages all manufacturers to contact the Governor’s Office and request a veto of this bill.

Read more Labor & Employment articles

Capitol updates archive 989898989