Gender Pay Gap Reporting

  • Denise Rose
  • Wednesday, March 7th, 2018

By the 30 March 2018 public sector employers with 250 or more employees in England will have to publish information on their gender pay gap, detailing the difference in average pay between all men and women in their workforce.  The private and voluntary sector employers similarly employing 250 or more employees will have to do so by 4 April 2018.  These organisations will have to do so once a year from now on.

Businesses have been warned that if they fail to comply with the reporting rules they could face unlimited fines.

On the 19 December 2017 the Equality and Human Rights Commission published its draft enforcement strategy.  This sets out the Commission’s range of powers to enforce the law, which would include the power to investigate suspected breaches of the regulations by employers and offer employers the opportunity to enter into a formal agreement to comply as an alternative to continuing with investigations.

If an employer does not accept this offer and is later found to have breached the regulations, if could be issued with an unlawful act notice.  This notice could then be enforced through a court order.  If an employer then refuses to comply with the court order this could lead to a summary conviction and unlimited fine.

Whilst this may seem harsh from an employer’s perspective, the Commission has said that the purpose of taking such enforcement action is to ensure that those that breach the regulations are held to account and to deter non-compliance by other employers.