Wage Disclosure Protection Handbook Statement: Minnesota

Author: Amy E. Mendenhall, Marissa L. Dragoo, Corinn Jackson, Judith A. Paulson and Brenda N. Canale, Littler

When to Include This Statement

Minnesota employers should include this statement in their handbook to inform employees about their rights related to wage disclosure, as well as the limitations on such disclosures.

Minnesota's Wage Disclosure Protection Law, requires employers that provide an employee handbook to their employees to include in the handbook a notice of employee rights and remedies under the law.

Customizable Handbook Statement

Wage Disclosure Protection

No employee will be prohibited from disclosing the amount of his or her wages, or discussing another employee's wages which have been disclosed to him or her voluntarily. The Company will not take any adverse employment action against an employee because he or she makes such a disclosure, engages in such discussion, or asserts any rights under this policy.

Nothing in this policy will be construed to require an employee to disclose his or her wages to anyone. Moreover, this policy does not permit the disclosure of any proprietary information, trade secret, or information that is otherwise subject to a legal privilege or protected by law, without the express written consent of management; nor does it condone the disclosure of protected information concerning other employees to a competitor where prohibited by policy or contract. An employee may bring a civil action for a violation of this policy seeking any of the remedies available under the Minnesota Wage Disclosure Protection Law, including if appropriate, reinstatement, back pay, restoration of service credit, and expungement of adverse employment records.

Guidance for Employers

  • Minnesota's Wage Disclosure Protection Law (MWDPL) was enacted as part of a broader bill, called the Women's Economic Security Act (WESA).
  • Under the MWDPL, employers are prohibited from:
    • Requiring nondisclosure by an employee of his or her wages as a condition of employment;
    • Requiring an employee to sign a waiver or other document with the intent of denying an employee the right to disclose the employee's wages; or
    • Taking any adverse employment action against an employee for disclosing the employee's own wages or discussing another employee's wages which have been disclosed voluntarily.
  • There are limits on the types of information employees are permitted to disclose. Specifically, employees are prohibited from disclosing:
    • Proprietary information, trade secret information, or information that is otherwise subject to a legal privilege or protected by law, without the written consent of the employer; and
    • Wage information of other employees to an employer's competitor.
  • Nothing in the MWDPL is to be construed as diminishing existing rights under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) or creating an obligation on any employer or employee to disclose wages.
  • Employers may not retaliate against employees for asserting rights or remedies under the MWDPL.
  • Employers that provide an employee handbook to their employees must include in the handbook a notice of employee rights and remedies under the MWDPL.
  • Employees may bring a civil action against an employer for a violation of the MWDPL. If a court finds that an employer has violated the law, it may order reinstatement, back pay, restoration of lost service credit, if appropriate, and the expungement of any related adverse records of an employee who was the subject of the violation.