The Massachusetts Equal Pay Act (MEPA) is a law enacted to ensure equal pay for comparable work for all Massachusetts workers. The Act went into effect on July 1, 2018.
What Does the Act Do?
The Act does three things:
- It prohibits employers from asking job applicants about salary history, with the exceptions of when a candidate voluntarily discloses his or her pay, or the employer extends an offer of employ.
- It prohibits employers from requiring that employees refrain from discussing wage information, with an exception for employees whose job it is to safeguard pay information.
- It requires that employers provide equal pay for comparable work.
See details below.
Provisions of the Act
The Act prohibits employers from asking job applicants about salary history, with two exceptions:
- The candidate voluntarily discloses his or her pay; or
- The employer extends an offer of employment to the candidate with stated compensation.
The Act prohibits employers from requiring that employees refrain from discussing wage information.
- An employee whose position provides him/her with access to salary data can be prohibited from discussing pay information.
The Act considers comparable work to be work that is “substantially similar in skill, effort, and responsibility, and is performed under similar working conditions.”
- The Act still allows for wage fluctuations within comparable jobs based upon the following criteria: seniority; merit; commissions; geography; travel; education, training or experience.
- Market conditions are not a justification for wage fluctuations.
See details about each of these provisions in our FAQs.
What Can I Do?
|As a Recruiter or Hiring Manager|
|As a Manager or Supervisor|
|As an Employee|
Where Can I Learn More?
- Attend a training session.
- Read our FAQs.
- Download our one-page summary of the Act (PDF).
- Contact your Human Resources Officer.
- Contact the Compensation Office.
- See the Resources for Those Who Hire provided by Staffing Services, including
- Hiring Process Overview
- Phone Screen Template
- How to Post a Job
- See MIT's Policy on Non-Retaliation.
- See MA Bill S.2119: An Act to Establish Pay Equity.