New Hampshire Law Allows Employees to Discuss Wages and Benefits and Adds New Mandatory Posting Requirement

For those of our clients with operations in New Hampshire

New Hampshire has enacted RSA 274:38-a, which became effective January 1, 2015, specifically providing that employees may inquire about, discuss, or disclose their wages to other employees. This statute essentially tracks the National Labor Relations Act (“NLRA”), the federal law that already protects such employee rights as part of the NLRA’s definition of “concerted activities.” The law does not protect the disclosure of confidential information about employees by anyone who only has access to that information as part of their job responsibilities (such as employees in the Human Resources or payroll departments), unless that disclosure is part of an investigation, proceeding, hearing, or other state law action.

Employers with employees in New Hampshire should carefully review and revise their policies to ensure that employees are not prohibited from disclosing or discussing their compensation or benefits, and should educate managers and supervisors that they may not take any adverse action against employees for disclosing or discussing their compensation or benefits.

Perhaps even more significantly, the law also requires employers to post a notice of employees’ rights to discuss wages. The new notice can be downloaded from the New Hampshire Department of Labor’s website:  http://www.nh.gov/labor/documents/equal-pay-poster.pdf

If you have any questions or concerns about this new law and its requirements, please contact any of the attorneys at Skoler, Abbott & Presser, P.C. at (413) 737-4753.

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