To follow-up one of my earlier blogs, the Diane B. Allen Equal Pay Act (“the New Jersey Equal Pay Act”) is in effect on July 1, 2018. The law protects all classes recognized under the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination. Specifically, the law makes it an unemployment practice “[f]or an employer to pay any of its employees who is a member of a protected class at a rate of compensation, including benefits, which is less than the rate paid by the employer to employees who are not members of the protected class for substantially similar work, when viewed as a composite of skill, effort and responsibility.”
The New Jersey Equal Pay Act, however, expressly provides for narrow, itemized legally permissible reasons for offering employees a different rate of compensation. In addition, the law enhances the damages available to prevailing employees under the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination. Indeed, a prevailing party may be awarded three times the amount of monetary damages (known as treble damages) for unlawful discrimination or retaliation under the New Jersey Equal Pay Act.
The Act is a game-changer for employees in the State of New Jersey as they will now be afforded additional protection for unlawful differential in compensation. For more details on the New Jersey Equal Pay Act, please see https://custodelaw.com/discrimination/new-jersey-legislature-passes-comprehensive-equal-pay-act.