Now that the Salary History Ban is effective in Philadelphia (as of September 1st), Hire Image thought it was a good time to check in on its checkered past.


What Does the Salary History Ban Do?

Similar to other state and local Salary History Bans, under Philadelphia’s law, employers are prohibited from inquiring about a prospective employee’s wage history, conditioning employment or consideration for an interview on disclosure of wage history, retaliating against a prospective employee for failing to comply with any wage history inquiry, or relying on the wage history of a prospective employee in determining their wages, unless the applicant “knowingly and willingly” disclosed their salary history to the employer.


Why is Philadelphia Different?

Unlike other laws, however, this legislation was passed nearly four years ago, spurring an onslaught of debate in doing so. A brief overview of its timeline to effectiveness follows:

  • November, 2016: Salary History Ban passed in Philadelphia
  • April, 2018: federal judge finds that the Salary History Ban violates an employer’s First Amendment right of free speech
  • February 2020: Federal court reverses 2018 decision of district court and sets effective date of September 1, 2020


What’s Next for Philadelphia Employers?

If they haven’t already, Hire Image recommends that Philadelphia employers revise their hiring practices, including their job applications and interview questions, to ensure they are not inquiring about an applicant’s salary history.

Want to learn more? Hire Image has provided more information on the regulations and FAQs that the Chamber of Commerce and the City of Philadelphia drafted.

Original ordinance, as passed in 2017.