Pay Transparency Bill Headed to Illinois Governor

UPDATE: Governor Pritzker signed this bill into law on August 11, 2023.

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Illinois employers already required to make pay disclosures for the Equal Pay Registration Certificate (ERPC) process would face even more stringent pay transparency duties under legislation currently headed to Governor Pritzker for signature. If approved by the governor, HB 3129 would mandate that Illinois employers include a pay scale and disclose benefits in all open job postings.  

Disclosure Requirement. HB 3129 would require pay scale disclosures for all open job positions posted by businesses with 15 or more employees in Illinois.  “Pay scale and benefits” mean the wage or salary or its range, and a general description of the benefits and other compensation, including but not limited to, bonuses, stock options, and incentive-based compensation.  The pay scale must be one the employer reasonably expects in good faith to offer for the position.  The statute allows an employer to set this range based on any of these factors:

  • A good-faith estimate;
  • Reference to previously determined ranges for the position;
  • The actual range for employees currently holding equivalent positions;
  • The budgeted amount for the position.

Unlike many other states with pay transparency laws, Illinois would permit employers to satisfy this disclosure requirement by including a hyperlink to a publicly viewable webpage that lists all required disclosures.  The Illinois law would also apply to third parties, such as job search sites, which would be required to post the pay scale and benefits for a position they post on behalf of an employer.

Promotional Positions. Aside from the disclosure rules, the bill would also require an employer to announce, post, or make known all promotional opportunities to all current employees within 14 days after the employer makes an external job position available.  The disclosure aspects of the bill would therefore affect internal as well as external applicants.

Remote or Hybrid Workers. Employers should be mindful that even if a position generally requires the employee to work outside Illinois, they would still need to comply with these disclosure requirements for positions that are actually performed in Illinois “at least in part” and where the employee reports to a supervisor, office, or other work site in Illinois.

Enforcement and Penalties. The statute would provide current or former employees the ability to file a complaint with the Illinois Department of Labor (IDOL) within one year from the alleged violation. The IDOL would be empowered to conduct investigations to enforce the law. If the IDOL were to find that any job posting was not properly disclosed, the penalty would vary depending on whether the job posting was active and whether it was the employer’s first or a repeat offense. For active job postings, the IDOL would provide the employer a date by which it would be required to remedy the violation by making the necessary disclosures. Fines would range from $250 for a first offense to $10,000 for a third or subsequent offense.

If Governor Pritzker signs the bill, these disclosure requirements would take effect on January 1, 2025.  This provides Illinois employers more than a year and a half to prepare for this new law, a more generous “ramp up” period than provided by other pay transparency states such as California, New York, and Washington. 

Information contained in this publication is intended for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice or opinion, nor is it a substitute for the professional judgment of an attorney.