Panel Reverses Order Blocking Salary Inquiry Provision for Philadelphia Employers
Tags : Salary History Legislation
The Third Circuit lifted an injunction that had frozen a measure to ban Philadelphia employers from inquiring about salary history.
On February 6, 2020, a panel of three judges reversed a district court decision that blocked the salary history inquiry provision of the city's equal pay reform from taking effect. Furthermore, the panel affirmed the district court's decision to not block the law's "reliance" provision which prohibited employers from using a candidate's wage history to establish a new salary.
In April 2018, Eastern District of Pennsylvania Judge Mitchell Goldberg granted a preliminary injunction on the salary inquiry ban provision. In defending this decision, Judge Goldberg stated that the city had not displayed that preventing employers from making inquiries about salary history would support narrowing the wage gap.
In advocating for the block, The Chamber of Commerce of Greater Philadelphia had contested that the law was in violation of the U.S. Constitution as it restricted employers as to what they can say when vetting applicants. The panel determined that the City's rationale behind the restriction was sufficient to justify the law in their reversal decision.
"The city enacted the inquiry provision in an attempt to address this persistent problem and the record is clearly sufficient to withstand this First Amendment challenge to it," stated the panel. Per this conclusion, the panel instructed the lower court to deny the Chamber's injunction bid.
In its reversal, the panel determined that the city possessed sufficient proof that banning salary history questions would assist both women and minorities. This proof included expert testimony from a leading labor economist who demonstrated an academic consensus that women are compensated less than their white, male counterparts and that these discrepancies occur even when evaluating certain criteria such as education and experience. The panel justified the decision further stating that the U.S. Supreme Court had previously "upheld similar restrictions based on much less evidence."
Philadelphia is one of several cities that has enacted salary inquiry laws which prohibit employers from asking applicants about their wage history. Philadelphia employers should invest the time and resources to ensure that all hiring and recruiting policies are compliant with this law.
Posted: February 11, 2020
All Rights Reserved © 2020 Certiphi Screening, Inc.
This document and/or presentation is provided as a service to our customers. Its contents are designed solely for informational purposes, and should not be inferred or understood as legal advice or binding case law, nor shared with any third parties. Persons in need of legal assistance should seek the advice of competent legal counsel. Although care has been taken in preparation of these materials, we cannot guarantee the accuracy, currency or completeness of the information contained within it. Anyone using this information does so at his or her own risk.
Everyone I have contacted at Certiphi has been a complete pleasure to work with. The Certiphi customer service rivals every other customer service I come in contact with. Everyone is always so professional, yet super nice! Thanks for all you do and keep up the amazing work and impeccable service that you provide!!!
Thank you so much! You have such an incredible reputation within our office; I think we would all say your customer service levels are continually at about 125%!
The response time has been very quick. The turnaround times are great. I love your systems and that I can go in and look at the process as its going.
It’s such a great customer service that you provide and I’m happy to tell that to anyone.
Working with Certiphi has been such a pleasure. Certiphi has taught me so much, not just about backgrounds but also the meaning of great business.
We flew through our NCQA licensure review. We very much appreciate Certiphi's help in earning a 100% score for the files!