Federal Fair Pay Act Signed into Law

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President Obama has signed the Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, which amends Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Equal Pay Act, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Rehabilitation Act.  The law will reverse a U.S. Supreme Court decision and make it easy to file unequal pay suits.  It has the effect of requiring employers to store salary and wage records for an indefinite period of time.  It applies to employers with 15 or more employees.

Additionally, by a 256-163 vote, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Paycheck Fairness Act. The bill would amend the Equal Pay Act of 1963 and impose the burden of justifying pay disparities between men and women within the same facility. The bill also lifts the caps on compensatory and punitive damages for which employers would be liable and protects employees who discuss their wages with co-workers and who file complaints.

President Obama has indicated that he will sign that bill into law as well.