Equal Pay and Compensation

Everyone professes to believe in the equality of men and women. Unfortunately, the reality is that many women continue to earn less than men for doing the same types of jobs. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, women make approximately 79 cents for every $1 that a man earns. Even in more progressive states like Maryland, this “wage gap” persists; according to official figures, women here still only earn about 85% as much as their male colleagues.

Federal and state laws are designed to prohibit this type of sex-based discrimination, but many women may not even know what their rights are under the law. That is why, if you suspect that you are a victim of the wage gap, you should speak with a qualified Baltimore equal pay and compensation attorney who can advise you of your legal options.

At The Law Firm of J.W. Stafford, L.L.C., we represent employees who have received less favorable treatment in pay and compensation due to their gender. Not only does federal law protect your right to seek damages against your employer, but recently revised Maryland equal pay rules ensure greater transparency in the workplace so you can actually find out if you are a victim of pay discrimination. Attorney Jamaal (“Jay”) W. Stafford and his experienced legal team can help you review your employment situation and determine if litigation is your best option.

New Maryland Laws Help Working Women Fight Back

The Equal Pay Act is the principal federal law that requires men and women to be paid the same for “substantially equal” work. Pay in this context refers to total compensation, including overtime, bonuses, travel expenses, stock options and profit sharing, and any other benefits arising from employment. In other words, even if men and women in the same job earn the same base wage, it is still a violation of the Equal Pay Act if the employer gives certain incidental benefits only to male employees.

In 2016, Maryland strengthened its own statewide equal-pay laws. Among other things, Maryland now forbids so-called “mommy tracking,” i.e. employer policies that assign female employees to career tracks with fewer opportunities for advancement. The Maryland law also allows employees to discuss or seek information about their coworkers’ compensation without fear of retaliation. Many Maryland employers previously required their employees to sign waivers restricting their right to disclose their wages in order to prevent female employees from realizing there was a wage gap.

We Can Help Find a Solution to Your Pay Discrimination Problem

Unlike many other types of employment discrimination actions, claims under the Equal Pay Act do not have to be brought first to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. This means that an employee who has suffered from equal pay or compensation discrimination can proceed directly to court against her employer. Of course, many of these issues can be resolved with the employer through negotiation.

Such negotiations are significantly more likely to go in your favor if you work with a Baltimore equal pay and compensation attorney who knows the law inside and out. You also need a lawyer who will take the time to understand your case. At The Law Firm of J.W. Stafford, L.L.C., we know that not every employment discrimination situation is the same. That is why we will work with you to figure out the best solution to your problem, whether that is negotiation or litigation. Contact us today or call us at (410) 514-6099 to schedule a consultation.