Association Proposes Employee Choice Amendments on Non-Disclosure Agreement Legislation 

In an effort to preserve the rights of those who experience workplace discrimination, retaliation or harassment, the New Jersey State Bar Association gave lawmakers suggested amendments to legislation about the use of non-disclosure agreements. The legislation passed the Senate 34-1 Thursday.

The association offered several proposals to consider with S-121.

Here is the NJSBA’s statement:

The NJSBA recognizes the fundamental right of people who are victimized to make a choice to keep their private matters confidential. Only the victim can decide how best to move forward after having experienced workplace sexual harassment or assault or discrimination. Those who wish to settle must be allowed to decide for themselves whether to do so with enforceable confidentiality restrictions or with the right to make further public disclosure.

As a practical reality, employees who settle their claims typically have grave concerns about continuing to provide financially for their families and usually must continue in their careers. S-121 (Weinberg), as currently written, strips employees of the right to settle with an enforceable confidentiality restriction. This will result in an across-the-board reduction in the value of settlements or a revictimization of the employee through protracted litigation, trials and inevitable appeals.

S-121 unfairly shifts the burden of preventing all future workplace harms onto the backs of victims who have already been brave enough to come forward. This is a policy choice that cannot be supported by the NJSBA.

To read the full amendments, visit njsba.com.