A new law has been enacted that affects employment contracts, and settlement agreements that resolve discrimination, retaliation, and harassment claims. Employers like to include confidentiality provisions in these agreements to avoid the adverse publicity should the agreements be made public. That can no longer be done. S-121, recently signed into law, makes this kind of confidentiality agreement unenforceable as against public policy.
In addition, no right or remedy available to employees under the Law Against Discrimination “or any other statute or case law” can be waived in advance.
Attorney's fees and court costs are among the remedies available for violation of the new law.
As usual, there are some twists and exceptions (sorry, union members, collective bargaining agreements are not covered).
Employees need to know this, since their rights are expanded. Employers need to know, too, since a strategy of hiding questionable behavior behind confidentiality agreements will no longer work in the Garden State.