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California's Pay Transparency Law Takes Effect Soon. Here's What to Know

After New York's pay transparency went into effect Nov. 1, California workers may be wondering when the West Coast state's law will take effect. Here's what to know.

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As New Yorkers see the city's new salary transparency law going into effect Wednesday, many California jobseekers may be wondering about SB 1162, the state’s answer to pay transparency that is set to go into effect in 2023. 

Senate Bill 1162, authored by Senator Monique Limόn (D-Santa Barbara) and signed by Gov. Gavin Newsom, is a bill similar to NYC’s law that requires employers to make salary ranges known in job postings. 

California is home to some of the most influential companies, like Apple, Disney, Google and Meta. 

According to government data, women in California are paid 88 cents for every dollar a man makes, and the gap increases for women of color.

Newsom made note of the disparity when he signed 1162 into law in September, aiming to close the gap.

“California has the strongest equal pay laws in the nation, but we’re not letting up on our work to ensure all women in our state are paid their due and treated equally in all spheres of life,” said Newsom. “These measures bring new transparency to tackle pay gaps, end discriminatory pricing of products based on gender and expand supports for survivors of abuse and assault. I thank the Legislative Women’s Caucus for their leadership and partnership in building a more equitable California for all.”

What is 1162?

SB 1162 was signed into law by Newsom Sept. 27. It requires companies with 15 or more employees to post pay range on job postings. 

When does California’s pay transparency law go into effect?

The law officially begins Jan. 1, 2023. 

What else does the transparency law do? 

There will be a benefit for workers currently employed as well. After the law goes into effect, if an employee asks for a salary range for his or her role, the employer must provide it. 

That means existing employees can find out if their pay is within an appropriate range, and possibly negotiate for a raise.

What other states have enacted pay transparency laws?

New York’s law went live Nov. 1. It requires employers to post minimum and maximum pay on job posts for companies with four or more workers.

Colorado was the first state to require job postings share salary information. That law went live in January of 2021. 

Nevada’s SB 293 went into effect in 2021, requiring employers to provide a salary range automatically after the first interview. In Connecticut, employers must provide a salary range if a candidate asks. Similarly, Washington state requires employers to provide a salary range if a job seeker asks or if the company makes an offer, according to CNBC

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