A Hawaii pay transparency law goes into effect at the start of 2024, part of a growing employment law trend across the country.
Aimed at reducing pay inequalities, Hawaii’s law is similar to those in California, Colorado and New York City in that it will require employers to include pay ranges in job descriptions, among other provisions.
The Hawaii governor signed the bill during the summer of 2023 and it becomes effective Jan. 1, 2024.
Pay Transparency Laws
Hawaii Pay Transparency Law
Under the Hawaii pay transparency law, job postings must include an hourly rate or salary range that “reasonably reflects the actual expected compensation.”
However, there are exceptions to the law, including:
- Jobs that are internal transfers or promotions within a current company
- Public employee positions for which salary, benefits or other compensation are determined through collective bargaining
- Jobs with employers that have fewer than 50 employees
It is notable that the Hawaii law does not cover internal positions, as many other pay transparency statues do. Even those laws that only require a pay range upon request often include internal positions.
Lastly, the law also amended a section on equal pay, expanding the protected categories from simply “sex” to also include:
- Sex, including gender identity or expression
- Sexual orientation
- Marital status
- Arrest and court record
- Reproductive health decision
- Domestic or sexual violence victim status
Webinar Recording: Clear as Mud – Pay Transparency Laws
Employment Law Compliance
Pay transparency legislation has become one of several recent employment law compliance trends for employers to monitor. For example:
Meanwhile, there continues to be a continued growth in city and county employment laws, notably those related to minimum wage, paid leave and employee rights. And all these ordinances add up to additional labor law poster requirements.
In 2017, there were 115 mandatory updates to local posters. That number jumped to 188 mandatory updates in 2022.
Employment law legislation continues to grow and evolve. It’s not simply labor law posters, minimum wage rates and paid leave laws anymore.
From hair discrimination laws to protections for recreational marijuana use, large employers have plenty to consider. That spans hiring laws such as ban the box to termination legislation regarding payout of unused vacation time upon separation.
Also, existing laws keep seeing updates, whether through tweaks to legislative language or government officials handing down additional guidance.
Lastly, there has also been a rise of class-action lawsuits in employment law in recent years, making compliance all the more important.
Employment Law Compliance Resources
Employers with locations in Hawaii should review and prepare their hiring practices and procedures in advance of the new pay transparency law taking effect Jan. 1, 2024.
As a reminder, it only applies to employers with 50 or more workers and does not cover internal transfers or promotions within a current employer.
Still, with the acceleration of such laws in recent years, and growing public sentiment — and the lost hours that may result in being more cryptic regarding pay scales — pay transparency seems to be a new and growing realm for HR and compliance teams to tackle.