Hadsell Stormer Renick & Dai LLP
Free Consultations 626-381-9261

Employers allowed to use salary history to set new salaries

Whether you are looking for a new job or are recruited to take a new position, chances are that you are looking for an increase in salary. To that extent, salary history could be used in setting your new salary. But when salary history is used to pay someone less than their peers, such a practice should be actionable.

Or should it?

According to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, one’s salary history could be used in setting new salary in limited circumstances. A math consultant for Fresno County schools learned that she was paid less than her colleagues even though they had the same job and responsibilities. She sued under the Equal Pay Act, and a U.S. District Court judge found that setting her salary based on prior pay was “so inherently fraught with risk” that it would perpetuate wage discrimination.

However, the appeals court disagreed. It reasoned that the Equal Pay Act allows employers to use an applicant’s salary history as a factor (other than sex) if it supports a legitimate, non-discriminatory business policy and the employer uses the factor reasonably. It agreed with Fresno County on its rationale for considering salary history, which included:

-          Prevention of favoritism and ensuring consistency in salaries

-          Encouraging qualified candidates to leave prior employment

The Ninth Circuit sent the case back to the district court to examine whether Fresno County applied its policy reasonably. In the meantime, the ruling sets a possible showdown before the U.S. Supreme Court, given that appellate courts in other jurisdictions came to the opposite conclusion. 

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
    • The National Trial Lawyers | Top 100 Trial Lawyers
    • Top Listed In Best Lawyers | The World's Premier Guide
    • Americas Top 100 2017 | Criminal Defense Attorneys
    • AV Preeminent Martindale-Hubbell Lawyer Ratings
    • Super Lawyers | Rising Stars 2018
    • Best Lawyers US News 2016
    • The National Trial Lawyers | Top 40 Under 40
    • proud fellow of american bar foundation
    • 2018 Top 100 Lawyer ASLA
    • SuperLawyers Rising Stars 2018

Have You Been Victimized?

Speak to an attorney who will fight for you.

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information
disclaimer.

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.

close

Privacy Policy

Email Us For A Response

Pasadena Office
128 N. Fair Oaks Avenue, Suite 204
Pasadena, CA 91103

Phone: 626-585-9600
Fax: 626-577-7079
Map & Directions

Downtown Los Angeles Office (Legal Fund)
250 1st Street, Suite 1201
Los Angeles, CA 90012

Phone: 213-785-6999
Map & Directions

Free Consultations

Tel: 626-381-9261
Toll-free: 866-457-2590