Effective January 1, 2023, some Washington state employers will be required to disclose compensation ranges in job postings, including remote positions.

The Washington State Department of Labor and Industries recently issued interpretive guidance concerning the amended Washington Equal Pay and Opportunities Act. The act mandates disclosure of compensation ranges in job postings – including remote positions

On November 30, 2022, the state of Washington issued long-awaited guidance document providing further guidance on its amended Equal Pay and Opportunities Act.

Washington Equal Pay and Opportunities Act Details

Per the act’s issued guidance, employers with 15 or more employees (including non-Washington-based employees) must now disclose good faith compensation ranges and a general description of available benefits in job postings for any position to be performed in Washington or that might be performed in Washington (i.e., remote work). Both an upper and lower range of the compensation scale must be provided, and all benefits that are “reasonable and genuinely expected” to be provided, such as insurance and retirement benefits, must be included. 

Washington’s statutory and regulatory schemes closely parallel Colorado’s and New York City’s current pay transparency laws, so it is not surprising that Washington applies its law to remote work as those two states do. However, unlike Colorado or California, Washington’s law will not require employers to maintain employment compensation records or provide annual reports to the state’s fair employment practices agency. 

Under Washington’s statutory scheme, employers are subject to an administrative penalty of $1,000 for each violation. Aggrieved candidates and current employees may also bring a civil action against an employer to recover a minimum of $5,000 in damages (plus interest, costs and attorneys’ fees). 

Althauser Rayan Abbarno, LLP attorneys in Olympia and Centralia

For more than 75 years, Althauser Rayan Abbarno attorneys have represented individuals and businesses throughout Washington state. To meet with our attorneys in Centralia or Olympia, call (360) 736-1301.