The “S” Word: A New Issue for Employment and Business Law

Wed Apr 18, 2018 by on Florida Law News


There is a movement underway throughout the United States and it is to do away with the “S” word.

What is the “S” word?  It is salary. Employers are being banned in some cities and states from asking a job applicant’s salary history.  In fact, California, Delaware, Massachusetts, New York City, and Oregon are just some of the many locations where past salary can no longer be asked.

Why? The trend to not ask the “S” word is to combat potential wage discrimination and gender pay gaps. Business Insider has reported that women earn 79 cents for every dollar that men earn.  Salary history questions can inadvertently cause such inequalities to perpetuate.  Additionally, employment applicants may feel pressured to answer the “S” question either because they run the risk of not getting the position if they “fudge” their salary history; or, they may feel that their starting salary is “low-balled” if they answer the question honestly.

Our team at Oppenheim Law recognizes that many business owners and entrepreneurs encounter a myriad of legal issues daily, especially when it concerns employment issues. Our corporate concierge law program provides business owners with information and guidance so they are kept informed, can prevent legal issues from arising, and have a trusted advisor on their side.

While the State of Florida (and no county or city within Florida) has not yet adopted the laws prohibiting employers to ask the “S” question, there are companies who have already implemented this policy voluntarily.


From the concierge program,

Ellen Pilelsky

Tags: Business Law, wage discrimination

2 responses to “The “S” Word: A New Issue for Employment and Business Law”

  1. Archie says:

    Thanks for sharing this information

  2. Florida should strongly consider adopting this policy. There’s no need to anchor an employee’s current salary to the previous salary. Businesses should simply negotiate a fair salary (fair for both parties) and pay people what they are worth.

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