Washington Salary Transparency Law

January 13, 2023


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Did You Know That Washington Job Seekers Could Get $5,000 Thanks To Recent Updates To Washington Salary Transparency Laws?

Washington State employers must post clear salary information on all job applications under the updated Washington Equal Pay and Opportunities Act (EPOA). The pay transparency law applies to any employer that does business in Washington State with 15+ employees and at least one of those employees is Washington-based. If your employer breaks the salary transparency law, you could be entitled to $5,000 in damages, as well as attorney’s fees.

Every worker deserves a fair wage. Salary transparency builds trust and improves employee morale while also creating a competitive job market for job searchers and current employees. Here’s what you need to know about the updated salary transparency law.

What Are The Salary Transparency Requirements For Washington State Jobs?

Whether printed or digital, job postings in Washington State must list a clear salary range or hourly rate.

Ranges such as $50,000-$75,000 per year or $16-$20 per hour based on experience are ok, anything open-ended, like $50,000 per year and up, is not.

Jobs that pay by commission or piece rates must clearly state the rate, i.e., 3-5% commission of net sale price or $0.50-$0.75 per pound of produce picked.

Additionally, any benefits that are part of the compensation package (medical, dental, vision, stock options, etc.) must be listed, however, they don’t have to put a dollar value for those benefits.

One thing to note: if the job posting doesn’t provide clear salary information but provides a link to learn more about the job, the link must provide salary ranges.

What Happens If The Job Posting Doesn’t List The Salary?

The updated Washington State salary transparency law requirements allow job seekers to sue for damages of $5,000 minimum and attorney’s fees. Employers could also face fines from The Washington State Department of Labor and Industries (L&I) for breaking the law. Additionally, employers cannot avoid the law by excluding Washington State citizens from the job listing.

What To Do If You Apply For A Job In Washington State And The Salary Isn’t Posted

If you live in Washington State and applied for a job after January 1, 2023, and the job posting did not list clear salary or pay information, here’s what you should do:

Sharing Salary History

As part of the updated law, employers can’t ask you for your salary history. They also can’t stop you from talking about your pay at work. If they do, you’re entitled to an additional $5,000 in damages, as well as employer fines and attorney’s fees.

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Why Choose Emery | Reddy?

If you believe your rights have been violated under the Washington Equal Pay and Opportunities Act, contact Emery | Reddy, PLLC for a free case review. Talking to an intake specialist before contacting L&I will help you understand all of your options and help you make the best choice for your situation.

Standing up to an employer who violated your rights can often feel scary and overwhelming, but it doesn’t have to be. With more than two decades’ worth of experience, we know what it takes to hold employers accountable. We’ve won tens of millions of dollars for clients dealing with workers’ rights violations. Find out how we can help you too—call our legal team now to find out if you have a case and what options are available.

Want More Information?

Wage And Hour Violations

Everyone deserves to be paid a fair wage and on time. Unfortunately, some employers disregard Washington State employment laws and don’t pay their employees what they are owed, resulting in wage and hour violations.

Document Review

A document review is a comprehensive consultation and analysis of your document’s legal language, context, and impact on your worker’s rights as an employee of Washington State.

Wrongful Termination

If you believe you are a victim of wrongful termination, you need an aggressive and experienced legal team to fight for the justice you deserve.

Meet The Team

The Seattle employment attorneys at Emery | Reddy, PLLC are passionate about helping workers with employment law issues and L&I claims. We Help Workers®: it’s our motto and what drives us every day.

We know how companies think, and we understand the tactics they use. Our workplace discrimination attorneys use that knowledge coupled with over two decades of experience to help our clients get access to the benefits to which they are legally entitled and hold employers accountable when they break the law.

If you’re struggling with an employment law issue, injury, or L&I claim, please call us and see how Emery | Reddy can help you today.

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Timothy W. Emery
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Patrick B. Reddy
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Karolina S. Arthur
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