New Jersey Equal Pay Lawyer
The New Jersey Equal Pay Act (NJEPA) requires employers to provide equal pay for equal work. Under the NJEPA, it is unlawful for employers to pay male employees more than female employees who perform the same tasks and contribute the same level of professional expertise. Likewise, the NJEPA prohibits gender-based disparities in the extension of health insurance coverage, paid time off, and other benefits or forms of compensation. Though primarily designed to prevent women from receiving lower pay for performing equivalent duties to male co-workers, the NJEPA also protects men by ensuring financial equality and merit-based pay in the workplace.
If you received lower pay or fewer benefits for performing the same duties and tasks as a co-worker of the opposite sex, your employer may have violated the NJEPA, and in the process, may have violated your protected legal rights as an employee. You may have grounds to sue your employer for workplace discrimination, and could be able to recover compensation for the wages or benefits you are rightfully owed under the NJEPA’s provisions.
To learn more about filing a lawsuit for equal pay in New Jersey, contact the Law Offices of Usmaan Sleemi at (973) 453-4060 for a free consultation with our effective and experienced equal pay attorneys. We are proud to serve employees of large, mid-size, and small businesses throughout the Northern New Jersey region.
Employee Compensation Laws Under the New Jersey Equal Pay Act (NJEPA)
The primary purpose of the New Jersey Equal Pay Act is, as its name suggests, ensuring that men and women receive equal pay for equal work. Exceptions apply in cases where there are substantial disparities between a male and female co-worker in terms of their experience, seniority, or the level of tasks assigned to each. For example, it is lawful to pay different salaries in cases where one worker has many more years of experience, or where one worker is responsible for performing a more complicated or specialized set of tasks.
However, in cases where a man and woman share similar experience levels, skill levels, and levels of responsibility at work, equal compensation must be provided to each under the NJEPA. This is true regardless of whether employees are paid hourly wages or a yearly salary, and regardless of whether paychecks are issued on a weekly or biweekly basis. In addition to wages and salary, the NJEPA also extends to various job benefits, such as paid vacation time, insurance coverage, pensions, wellness programs, and other perks.
Though the main requirement of the New Jersey Equal Pay Act is that employers provide equal compensation to workers who perform equal tasks, it also contains requirements pertaining to notices informing employees of their rights under the law. To be specific, the NJEPA requires employers to post prominent notices of the equal pay requirement in areas that are visible and accessible to employees, potentially including company websites in cases where such a website exists. Furthermore, employers are required to give employees written notice describing the law on a yearly basis. Finally, employers must provide information about the NJEPA to any employee, regardless of gender, if such information is requested by the employee. However, requirements pertaining to employee notification apply only to companies with a minimum of 50 employees.
If unequal pay comes to an employee’s attention, and the reason for the pay disparity is the employee’s gender rather than his or her experience level or skill set, it may be the case that the employer has violated key provisions of the NJEPA. If so, the employee may have grounds for a lawsuit against his or her employer. However, in order to prevail in such a case, the employee will need to prove that he or she received lower pay and/or fewer benefits than a male or female co-worker with approximately equivalent experience and ability.
In an effort to evade liability for pay discrimination, the employer will likely attempt to claim that the reason for the pay difference was something unrelated to gender. The employee must be prepared for this possibility with a compelling, evidence-based counter-argument. It is critical to be represented by a skilled and aggressive equal pay lawyer when approaching such cases, as legal representation increases the likelihood of prevailing in court against an employer who has violated New Jersey’s complex equal pay laws.
North Jersey Equal Pay Attorneys Representing Workers
Whether you are a man or a woman, you are entitled to receive equal pay to the opposite sex if you perform the same duties and contribute the same value to your company. If you are performing equal work, you should be receiving equal compensation. If you are not, it is in your best interests to contact an experienced workplace discrimination attorney as soon as possible for an assessment of your situation and how to best proceed. You may be able to recover compensation for financial losses related to receiving unequal pay. For a free consultation concerning your rights to fair wages and income under the New Jersey Equal Pay Act, contact the Law Offices of Usmaan Sleemi at (973) 453-4060 right away.