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EEOC Pay Data Collection Paused by the Office of Management and Budget

eeoc workers compensationThe U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s collection of pay data has been paused by the Office of Management and Budget after recent expansions to the collection were deemed “unnecessarily burdensome.” The largest office in the White House had initiated a review and immediate stay of the EEOC’s collection of information regarding pay data on the reports, which are called EEO-1s. This would have required all businesses that employ more than 100 staffers to submit information on gender, race and ethnicity on their forms.

The new report originally had a deadline of March 31, which was expected to cover around 60,000 employers and 63 million employees. Republican lawmakers had asked the Trump administration’s office to lift the requirements. Although the lawmakers thought the intentions of the EEOC were good, which was to collect information that could show pay discrimination in the workforce, the process would have created far more work than they felt was necessary for the research.

The Office of Management and Budget said the EEOC could use its previously approved form. However, the new expansion and revisions that require information on wages and hours worked from specific employers need to be given a second look to ensure there isn’t needless burden placed on the companies. The OMB told the EEOC in a memo that they have concerns over some aspects of the revised collection of information. Specifically, they are concerned the forms lacked practical utility and put too much burden while also not adequately addressing issues of privacy and confidentiality.

The EEOC acting Chair Vicki Lipnic has stated this decision won’t alter or deter the EEOC from its efforts to enforce equal pay laws and that the regulator will continue to review the order and look into new options. Lipnic stated she will “stand ready to work with Congress, federal agencies, and all stakeholders to achieve that goal.”

The EEOC had finalized the rule back in September under then-Chair Jenny Yang, who said at the time discrimination is often not detected because there is not enough information regarding how much people are being paid. Yang had said this type of information would be helpful in agency investigations on equal pay. However, there are still concerns over the discrepancy between the EEOC’s estimate of the cost of the collection with a survey conducted by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, which showed the actual cost is much higher than estimated. Further, this extra information, while potentially useful for investigation, has the potential to lead to several serious issues that include data security and privacy concerns while information about worker compensation is collected.

The information found by the EEOC could greatly impact how Worker’s Compensation and other benefits are calculated, along with other serious implications in the workforce. Contact us at Vanasse Law for help with Worker’s Compensation claims in Lancaster.

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