What Happens on March 24, 2022? And Other Things You Should Know About the Illinois Pay Data Reporting Law

On March 24, 2022, a new pay data reporting requirement will take effect for certain private employers in Illinois. Detailed discussions of this requirement and other aspects of the recent amendments to the Illinois Equal Pay Act of 2003 have appeared in prior posts, which are accessible here and here. Below are some key things you should know now.

What is an equal pay registration certificate?

The Illinois Department of Labor will issue equal pay registration certificates to employers that submit detailed pay data and state that they have satisfied their obligations under the Illinois Equal Pay Act of 2003. Every employer subject to the law must obtain an equal pay registration certificate from the Illinois Department of Labor.

Which Illinois employers are required to obtain an equal pay registration certificate?

The requirement to obtain an equal pay registration certificate generally applies to any private business that employs more than 100 individuals in the State of Illinois and is required to file an Annual Employer Information Report EEO-1 report with the Equal Employment Opportunity.

What is the significance of March 24, 2022?

March 24, 2022, is the first day that Illinois employers may apply for an equal pay registration certificate from the Illinois Department of Labor. The application period runs through March 23, 2024.

What is the deadline to apply for an equal pay registration certificate?

Employers must apply for an equal pay registration certificate between March 24, 2022, and March 23, 2024. An employer subject to this requirement may choose to wait until it receives a notice from the Illinois Department of Labor setting forth the specific deadline by which the employer must file an application. An employer should receive the notice at least 120 days before its deadline. However, the Illinois Department of Labor’s failure to issue a notice does not relieve an employer from the obligation to file an application.

The Illinois Department of Labor has asked employers to provide the agency with their contact information. Contact information may be provided via this link.

What if I do not receive a notice?

Even if it does not receive a notice, a business subject to the pay data reporting requirement must apply for an equal pay registration certificate from the Illinois Department of Labor. Therefore, if a business does not receive a notice, it should file an application by no later than March 23, 2024.

Is there anything I should do before receiving notice from the IDOL?

Yes. Employers subject to the pay data reporting requirement should audit their payroll records to identify and correct any problems now. We recommend involving counsel in any such audit in order to maintain privilege protections. Be aware that the application for an equal pay registration certificate includes a “compliance statement” in which a company representative must make several representations regarding the compensation employees receive.

What can I expect after submitting an application for an equal pay registration certificate?

Within 45 days of receiving an application, the Illinois Department of Labor must issue an equal pay registration certificate or issue a statement explaining why it has rejected the application. After an application is rejected, the applicant has 30 days to cure the deficiencies and resubmit the revised application. Applicants may appeal a rejection.

Is applying for an equal pay registration certificate a one-time obligation?

No. In addition to submitting an application to obtain an equal pay registration certificate between March 24, 2022, and March 23, 2024, a business must obtain recertification every two years thereafter.