Obligations of companies in Spain before the Equal Pay law

In Spain, among the flood of regulatory updates of the recent months at the labour level, one of the most eagerly awaited has been the one introduced by Royal Decree 902/2020 on equal pay. This Royal Decree corrects the existing wage inequalities between men and women in Spain and will enter into force on April 14, 2021.

The main new points of the Royal Decree on equal pay are:

  • Principle of pay transparency and obligation of equal pay for work of equal value. The first enables to identify discrimination, while the second defines as work of equal value that in which the nature of the functions entrusted, the educational, professional, or training conditions, the factors strictly related to their performance, and the working conditions in which such activities are carried out are equivalent.
  • All companies, regardless of the number of employees, are obliged to have a pay register for the whole staff, including managers and senior executives. This record should comprise, disaggregated by sex and distributed by professional categories or groups:
    • Average salary values
    • Salary supplements
    • Extra salary payments of the staff.
  • This register shall be accessible to the employees’ legal representatives and, in their absence, to the employees. However, the information they will receive will not be the same. Employees will be provided with information on the average percentage differences between men and women, while the employees’ legal representatives shall have the right to access the full content of the register. Companies that draw up an equality plan must include a pay audit divided into two phases:
    • The diagnosis phase of the remuneration situation in the company
    • The establishment phase of an action plan to correct pay inequalities (specifying concrete actions, timetables, people responsible for its implementation, etc.).
  • Companies carrying out pay audits should reflect in their pay records the average of work of equal value in the company disaggregated by gender and by professional category. They must also include the corresponding justification when the average total remuneration of one sex is at least twenty-five per cent higher than that of the other.
  • Finally, RD 922/2020 establishes that the information on remuneration or the absence thereof may give rise to administrative and judicial actions, both individual and collective, including the application of the corresponding sanctions for concurrent discrimination.

Alejandra Sanz

Questions about the obligations of companies before the Equal Pay law in Spain?

Please note that this article is not intended to provide legal advice.

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