NJ Legal Update

New Jersey Employment Lawyers | New Jersey Employment Law Update

New Pay Equality Poster and Notice Law Enacted in New Jersey New Jersey Governor Chris Christie recently signed a bill into law that will require many employers to post and distribute to employees a notice of their right to be free from gender-based pay discrimination in the workplace, and to obtain employees’ acknowledgment of receipt of the notice.

Under the new law, New Jersey employers with 50 or more employees must post and distribute to employees a new notice (to be drafted by the New Jersey Department of Labor) that details “the right to be free of gender inequity or bias in pay, compensation, benefits or other terms or conditions of employment” under the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, and the Equal Pay Act. The law will become effective November 21, 2012, but the required notice will likely not be available until after that date.

Under this new law, covered employers are required to distribute a copy of the notice: (1) to all employees no later than 30 days after it is issued by the New Jersey Department of Labor; (2) at the time of an employee’s hiring; (3) to all employees annually on or before December 31 of each year; and (4) at any time upon the first request of an employee.

Employers may distribute the notice via email, via printed material “including, but not limited to, a pay check insert, brochure or similar informational packet provided to new hires, an attachment to an employee manual or policy book, or flyer distributed at an employee meeting,” or via an internet or intranet website “if the site is for the exclusive use of all workers, can be accessed by all workers, and the employer provides notice to the workers of its posting.” Further, the distributed notice must be accompanied by an acknowledgment to be signed (or electronically verified) by the employee, affirming that the employee has read and understands the notice.

Finally, employers are required to post and distribute the notice in English and Spanish, in addition to any other language that the employer reasonably believes is the first language of a significant number of its workforce.

The new pay equality notice adds to the growing list of notices that must be distributed to employees in New Jersey (not just posted) including:

  • Record-keeping requirements notice, which must be posted and distributed at time of hire;
  • Family Leave Insurance notice, which must be posted and distributed at time of hire, upon the first request of an employee, and when an employee gives notice of taking family leave; and
  • Conscientious Employee Protection Act (CEPA) notice, which must be posted and distributed annually.

NJ Employment Law Alert

The New Jersey state legislature recently proposed a bill that would increase the state minimum wage to $8.50/hour effective July 1, 2012.  This would make New Jersey's minimum wage the third highest in the country (Washington and Oregon are higher).   Although the bill is likely to pass the NJ State Assembly and Senate, it is unclear whether Governor Christie will sign the bill into law. If you have any questions about minimum wage laws in New Jersey or New York, please contact a minimum wage lawyer at our firm for a free initial consultation.