The U.S. District Court in Washington, D.C. has taken the employer community by surprise by reinstating a requirement that detailed equal employment opportunity (EEO) data be reported, according to the National Law Review.
The required reporting, which started in 2016, was suspended by the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) in 2017. However, the March 4, 2019, decision reinstates the requirement set forth by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). The collected employee pay data includes W-2 wage information and total hours worked by gender, race, and ethnicity. The data collection aims to help the EEOC evaluate employers’ pay practices and ultimately to “prevent pay discrimination and strengthen enforcement” of federal anti-discrimination laws, according to the report. When the OMB suspended the data collection, it had indicated that some aspects of the expanded collection were unnecessarily burdensome for employers,
The surprise ruling, made just 12 weeks before employers’ submissions are due to the EEOC, means that “employers will be required to collect not only W-2 wage information and total hours worked by gender, race, and ethnicity, but also the number of employees falling within each of 12 pay bands for each job category, ranging from $19,239 and under to $208,000 and over. Employers have been providing race and gender information but have not been required to provide the pay data,” unless the ruling is stayed pending appeal, according to the report.
Confusion remains on whether the pay data will be required for this year’s reporting period. As of now, the EEO-1 survey portal has not yet been opened, and the EEOC has not issued any new instructions or guidance that is typical with the opening of the report. We will continue to monitor the issue and will provide additional information here as it becomes available.