Under a new law passed by the New York City Council, which will go into effect in April 2022 if not vetoed by January 14, 2022, employers in New York City will have to include the minimum and maximum starting salary for any "advertised job, promotion or transfer opportunity."

The bill, available here, will amend the New York City Human Rights Law (NYCHRL) to require that employers disclose a salary range "from the lowest to the highest salary the employer in good faith believes at the time of the posting it would pay for the advertised job, promotion or transfer opportunity" on all job advertisements for positions located in New York City. Employers will also have to include the salary range in all announcements or postings regarding promotion or transfer opportunities.

As the term "salary" is not defined, employers should comply with the new law regardless of whether a position is a salaried, exempt, or hourly non-exempt position. Failure to include a salary range would be considered a discriminatory practice under the NYCHRL. The posting requirement will not apply to temporary positions listed by temporary help firms.

The bill gives the New York City Commission on Human Rights (NYCCHR) the power to issue rules and regulations to implement and enforce the law. The NYCCHR is expected to clarify whether the salary range requirement applies to all jobs advertised in New York City, or only postings for jobs physically located in New York City. Mayor DeBlasio, or his successor, Mayor-elect Eric Adams, has until January 14, 2022, (30 days) to approve or veto the bill, which will go into effect in April 2022 even if the mayor does not affirmatively approve or deny the bill by January 14, 2022.

The New York City law is part of a growing trend of wage transparency laws that have been enacted in other jurisdictions in an effort to promote wage equity for groups who have historically received lower compensation. So far, only Colorado's law, like the recent New York City bill, requires employers to include salary ranges in job postings.

Other laws require employers to provide wage information upon the applicant's request or at other times during the recruitment process.

  • Laws in Maryland and Washington State require employers to disclose the pay range for a position upon an applicant's request.
  • In California, an applicant who has been interviewed for a position may request the pay range.
  • In Nevada, employers must provide salary range information to any applicant who has been interviewed for a position, even absent a request.
  • In Connecticut, employers must disclose the wage range upon the earlier of (i) the applicant's request or (ii) when a job offer is made.
  • Rhode Island enacted a similar law, scheduled to go into effect on January 1, 2023, which will require employers to provide applicants with the salary range for a position upon the earlier of the (i) applicant's request, (ii) when inquiring about an applicant's salary expectations, or (iii) when an offer is made.
  • In Ohio, local laws in Toledo and Cincinnati require employers to provide the salary scale for a position if an applicant who has received a conditional  offer requests the information.

Other jurisdictions are considering wage transparency laws. The New York State Senate and Assembly have proposed legislation, S5598A / A6529, which, like the New York City law, would require employers to disclose salary range information to applicants "upon issuing an employment opportunity for internal or public viewing." Wage transparency bills have also been introduced in Massachusetts and Pennsylvania.

Employers in New York City should begin to prepare for the new wage transparency law by reviewing the salary ranges of existing positions and determining whether to make any changes to those ranges to attract new candidates or retain current employees.

We will continue to monitor for further developments and will provide new information when it becomes available.