Maryland has enacted legislation (House Bill 123 and House Bill 14) that requires employers to provide pay transparency to applicants, prohibits employers from seeking an applicant's pay history, and bars employers from taking adverse action against employees for inquiring about their own wages. Both laws take effect on Oct. 1, 2020.
House Bill 123:
Under House Bill 123, employers must provide an applicant, upon request, the pay range for the position for which they are applying. Employers may not take adverse action against an applicant for making such a request.
House Bill 123 also prohibits employers from:
- Seeking an applicant's pay history.
- Relying on an applicant's pay history for screening, selection, and determining pay.
- Taking adverse action against an applicant because they didn't provide their pay history.
An applicant isn't prohibited from voluntarily sharing wage history information. After the employer has made an initial offer of compensation, if an applicant voluntarily shares such information without prompting from the employer, the employer may rely on it, or seek to confirm it, to support a pay offer higher than the initial offer.
House Bill 14:
Currently, Maryland's Equal Pay for Equal Work law prohibits employers from taking adverse action against an employee for inquiring about another employee's wages, disclosing the employee's own wages, discussing another employee's, asking the employer to provide a reason for the employee's wages, or encouraging another employee to exercise their rights under the law.
Effective October 1, 2020, House Bill 14 also prohibits an employer from taking adverse employment action against an employee for inquiring about their own wages.
Covered employers should review their hiring procedures and remove compensation history questions from their application forms by October 1, 2020. Anyone involved with screening or interviewing applicants should also be trained on House Bill 123. Supervisors should also be trained on House Bill 14. Please contact your dedicated service professional with any questions.