Before July 31, 2019, 16 states had passed laws to ban pay history inquiries on employment applications and during the interview process. Illinois has now joined these 16 states in banning this inquiry by amending the states Equal Pay Act, and on September 29, 2019, this amendment goes into effect. Companies that violate this law could be subject for special damages up to $10,000, and civil penalties of up to $5,000 for each violation.
In joining these other states, Illinois joins a spreading movement to ensure that women and minorities are treated fairly when it comes to salary considerations, and that their compensation is not lower for performing the same work as others, which has historically been the case.
Illinois employers, along with employers in the other 16 states need to ensure their applications and other employment documents are free of questions regarding compensation history, along with not asking these types of questions during the interview stage.