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Can I Discuss Wages with My Coworkers?


It’s legal for employees to discuss their wages with one another under both the California Equal Pay Act and the National Labor Relations Act. No employer may retaliate or otherwise reprimand employees for talking about their pay rates, benefits, or other forms of compensation at work.

The right to discuss freely your wages with your coworkers can be an important one, especially when it comes to ascertaining whether or not an employer may be discriminating against certain employees. Because employees are protected from adverse consequences for sharing details about compensation with each other, someone can file a lawsuit against an employer who violates this protection.

While employees are free to discuss wage information among themselves in California, it’s important to consider that sharing wage information outside of the workplace may not be protected by law. For example, an employer may not wish a competitor to learn how it compensates its employees to preserve its competitive edge.

In such a scenario, an employer may be within its rights to take adverse action against any employee who freely shares such information with individuals or entities not associated with the employer.

Consult with a Lawyer When You Need Help

Wage discussions among coworkers in California is protected by law and can be an important right to have when one believes they may be affected by unlawful wage practices.

Even absent of suspicion of an employer’s wrongdoing, the right to talk about your pay at work can help you learn more about what your labor is worth to your employer when compared to other employers in your industry – but exercise caution when discussing wage information outside of the workplace.

If you want to learn more about your employment rights or want an attorney to help you file a violation claim, contact K2 Employment Law today.