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Cincinnati Salary History Ban

April 3rd, 2019 | Joe Rotondo, Vice President of Compliance, Sterling

View of the Cincinnati Skyline

The City of Cincinnati, Ohio has become the latest jurisdiction to adopt an ordinance prohibiting employers from asking about the prior salary history of job applicants. On March 12, 2019, Cincinnati passed an ordinance prohibiting employers from asking applicants about their salary history or current earnings. The new law will take effect 365 days after the Ordinance becomes law.
The ordinance makes it an illegal discriminatory practice for a company within the city to ask applicants about their past or current salary, screen applicants based on wages or benefits, rely on salary history in hiring decisions or in determining compensation or to refuse to hire or otherwise retaliate against an applicant who refuses to provide his or her salary history.

Details to note:

  • The law pertains to an employer, employment agency or labor organization located in the City of Cincinnati that employs at least 15 employees within the City.
  • Employers can consider an applicant’s past wages for internal promotions or transfers, situations where employees are rehired within five years of leaving a company or in situations where federal law allows employers to consider salary.
  • Companies are also allowed to look at salary information if it comes up in the process of a background check while verifying non-salary-related information from an applicant if this information is not used as a basis for determining compensation during hiring.
  • Upon a reasonable request from an applicant who has received a conditional offer of employment, an employer must provide the pay scale for the position offered.
  • The new law hopes to ensure that residents in Cincinnati have their rights protected and that job applicants in Cincinnati are offered employment positions and compensation based on their job responsibilities and level of experience, not on prior salary histories.

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, click here to learn more.

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.