Maine Salary History Ban

May 7th, 2019 | Joe Rotondo, Vice President of Compliance, Sterling

Maine Salary History Ban

On April 12, 2019, the Governor of the State of Maine signed into law a salary history ban. This law adds a salary history ban to the Maine Human Rights Act and Equal Pay Law. As a result, Maine became the eight State to pass a salary history ban (California, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Massachusetts, Oregon and Vermont).

The new law will take effect on September 17, 2019.

The law specifically prohibits employers from:

  • Asking about a prospective employee’s compensation history until after that employer has extended a job offer, including compensation.
  • Making such inquiries directly to the candidate’s current or former employer or directly or indirectly to the applicant themselves.
  • Prohibiting employees from discussing their own or another employee’s salary.

The law has some exceptions:

  • Employers may confirm an applicant’s compensation history if the applicant voluntarily discloses the compensation
  • Pursuant to any federal or state law that specifically requires the disclosure or verification of compensation history for employment purposes, the employer may inquire about compensation history.

The penalties for violations of the law are $100 to $500 per violation as well as a civil action brought by or on behalf of the employee or applicant. There may also be exposure under the bill that the act of asking about an applicant’s compensation history can be cited as evidence of unlawful employment discrimination in complaints filed with the Maine Human Rights Commission.

The full text of the law can be found here:

The information contained herein is for informational purposes only. Clients are encouraged to consult with their legal counsel on the impact of this new law. Sterling is not a law firm, and none of the information contained in this notice is intended as legal advice.

This and other important legislative updates can be found on the Sterling website:

Sterling is not a law firm. This publication is for informational purposes only and nothing contained in it should be construed as legal advice. We expressly disclaim any warranty or responsibility for damages arising out this information. We encourage you to consult with legal counsel regarding your specific needs. We do not undertake any duty to update previously posted materials.