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03 Aug

July 2020 Maryland HR Legal Updates

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Summary of Laws with Upcoming Effective Dates

Hair Discrimination
Effective October 1, 2020, an amendment to the Maryland Fair Employment Practices Act provides that race discrimination includes discrimination based on traits associated with race, including hair texture, Afro hairstyles, and protective hairstyles such as braids, locs, and twists.

Salary History
Effective October 1, 2020, employers must provide job applicants with a wage range for their potential position upon request. In addition, employers may not take adverse action against applicants for not providing a wage history or rely on an applicant’s wage history in considering the applicant for employment or in determining the applicant’s wages.

However, after an initial offer of employment including a compensation offer has been made to an applicant, an employer may confirm and rely on voluntarily provided wage history to support a wage offer higher than initially offered, as long as the higher wage does not create an unlawful pay differential based on sex or gender identity.

Salary Disclosure
Effective October 1, 2020, employers may not take adverse action against employees for inquiring about their own wages.

Work Adjustment and Retraining Notification
Effective October 1, 2020, employers with 50 or more employees are required to provide written notice at least 60 days prior to the relocation of a part of an employer’s operation from one workplace to another existing or proposed site or the shutting down of a workplace or a portion of the operations of a workplace that reduces the number of employees by at least 25% or 15 employees, whichever is greater, over any three-month period.

Employers must also provide continuation of benefits to affected employees.

Paid Sick Leave
Effective October 1, 2020, the definition of a family member for paid sick leave purposes has been expanded to include a legal ward of the employee and a legal guardian or ward of the employee’s spouse.

Facial Recognition
Effective October 1, 2020, an employer may not use a facial recognition service for the purpose of creating a facial template during a job applicant’s employment interview unless the applicant provides consent.