In New York, employers are prohibited from discriminating against their employees based on a protected characteristic, including gender, national origin, color, race, sexual orientation, disability, age, or military status under the New York Human Rights Law. This prohibition against discrimination applies to all aspects of employment, including compensation. Employers must pay workers who perform similar jobs with similar duties equally. When an employer pays certain workers less because of their protected characteristics than they pay others, the workers who are paid less may have legal claims for compensation discrimination. The attorneys at Leeds Brown Law P.C. focus on employment discrimination, including discrimination in compensation. Our employment law and discrimination lawyers advocate for people throughout New York City who have experienced wrongful discrimination at their jobs.
Compensation discrimination in New York
Compensation discrimination is discrimination in pay based on a protected status. It is illegal under the federal Equal Pay Act, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and the New York Human Rights Law. Historically, compensation discrimination was prohibited when members of one sex were paid more than members of another. The New York Equal Pay Law was amended to expand its coverage to include compensation discrimination based on all of the protected classes under the New York Human Rights Law. This means that compensation discrimination in New York is prohibited based on the following statuses:
- Military status
- Sexual orientation
- National origin
If your compensation and benefits package is less than a coworker whose job is the same or substantially similar, you may have legal rights if the pay difference is based on your protected status. If you believe that you have been discriminated against in your compensation, contact Leeds Brown Law P.C. to schedule a consultation.
Federal prohibition against compensation and pay discrimination
The Equal Pay Act of 1963 makes differential compensation based on sex illegal. Under this law, it is unlawful for an employer to pay male and female employees differently for substantially similar work. Employers must compensate male and female workers who have similar jobs with substantially similar job functions equally in their hourly pay, salary, overtime, benefits, profit-sharing, bonuses, and all other forms of compensation. If your employer is in violation of this law, you may file a discrimination charge with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission or EEOC.
New York prohibition against compensation and pay discrimination
The amendment to the Equal Pay Law in New York will be effective on Oct. 8, 2019. Under this amendment, New York’s mandate for equal compensation has been expanded to cover all of the protected statuses that are listed in the New York Human Rights Law. This means that you can not be paid less than other workers who work in the same or similar jobs based on your protected status. The prohibition against compensation discrimination applies to all types of compensation. If you have learned that your employer has violated this law, you may be able to recover back pay for the wages that you should have been paid. Your employer may also be required to pay a $500 fine for each violation that was committed.
Compensation discrimination is illegal
Compensation discrimination is against the law under federal and state laws. If you have learned that your employer is paying workers differently based on their protected statuses, you may have grounds to file a discrimination claim with the EEOC, with the state, or with New York City. The employment law attorneys at Leeds Brown Law A.P.C. are experienced in helping the victims of all types of employment discrimination to hold their employers accountable and to recover damages. Contact us today to schedule a consultation so you can learn more about your rights.