New Mexico to Ban Nondisclosure Agreements for Sexual Harassment, Discrimination or Retaliation Claims

Author: Michael Cardman, XpertHR Legal Editor

March 9, 2020

Employers in New Mexico will no longer be able to require employees who file sexual harassment, retaliation or discrimination claims to sign a nondisclosure agreement (NDA) as part of a settlement.

The Protect Our Voices Act will prohibit private employers in New Mexico from requiring an employee to sign a nondisclosure provision of a settlement agreement relating to - or otherwise prevent an employee from disclosing - any claims of sexual harassment, discrimination or retaliation in the workplace.

However, a confidentiality provision will be allowed in a settlement agreement if:

  • It relates to the monetary amount of a settlement; or
  • At the employee's request, it prohibits the disclosure of facts that could lead to identifying the employee.

The law will apply to any agreements entered into between a private employer and its employees or former employees on or after May 20, 2020. Employers in New Mexico should review any forthcoming settlement agreements to ensure they do not violate the new law.

Several other states already limit, or will soon limit, nondisclosure provisions in settlement agreements for harassment, discrimination or retaliation claims, including: