When Equal Pay is not ‘Equal’ Pay

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The Equal Pay Act requires that an employer pay its male and female employees equal pay for equal work.

The jobs need not be identical, but they must be substantially equal, and substantial equality is measured by job content, not job titles. This act is a strict liability law, which means that intent does not matter. If a women is paid less than male for substantially similar work, then the law has been violated, regardless of the employer’s intent.

This strict liability, however, does not mean that pay disparities always equal liability. The EPA has several built-in defenses, including when the

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