Unfortunately, not every employee can assume they’ll be paid what they deserve based on the work they do. Many employees struggle to be compensated fairly, especially when employment discrimination is involved. Various labor laws at the federal, state, and local levels prohibit employees from being paid less due to their membership in a protected class, including the Equal Pay Act of 1963. If you believe you’re being paid less due to gender discrimination in your workplace, you may be wondering what exactly this law does.
At Bantle & Levy, we won’t stand for employment discrimination of any kind. We can help you protect your employee rights and fight to get you the compensation and fair treatment you deserve in the workplace.
How Does the Equal Pay Act Work?
The Equal Pay Act of 1963 is an amendment to the Fair Labor Standards Act and prohibits employers from paying employees different wages based on their sex. Under the EPA, employees must receive equal pay when they do equal work. This means that women are protected from being paid less because they’re a woman. However, the Equal Pay Act doesn’t only provide protections for women in the workplace. This protects all employees from being paid unfairly for their sex, regardless of what it is. If it’s determined that an employee is being paid less based on their sex, their employer must raise their salary to make it equal, not reduce someone else’s.
What Does Equal Work Mean?
Understanding what equal work means under the EPA isn’t as straightforward as it may seem. Equal work doesn’t mean that you have to be doing the exact same work as someone else to deserve the pay they’re receiving. Instead, the EPA requires that the work be substantially equal. The work must be substantially equal in skill, effort, and responsibility and be performed under similar working conditions in the same establishment. If your work isn’t completely identical to someone else’s but is very closely related and equal in these areas, don’t assume that you don’t deserve to be paid as much.
Pay differentials are permitted under the EPA when they’re based on seniority, merit, quantity or quality of production, or a factor not related to an employee’s sex. The employer must prove that one of these applies.
Does the Equal Pay Act Only Apply To Your Salary?
While the EPA requires employees to receive equal pay for equal work, it isn’t limited to only your salary. The EPA covers all forms of compensation. This includes overtime pay, bonuses, and a range of benefits.
Let Bantle & Levy Help You Get the Pay You Deserve
If you’re being paid unfairly based on your sex, gender, or any other protected class, you need an experienced employment discrimination attorney. At Bantle & Levy, we fight for employees throughout New York City who are being treated fairly and can fight for your rights to be protected.
Contact our gender discrimination attorneys today for help.