Disclosing Past Salary

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Anonymous User
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Disclosing Past Salary

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Mar 15, 2017 3:40 pm

Hey folks,

This thread applies primarily to mid law and small law, where the salary being negotiated can vary widely. The scenario is where HR requires you to disclose your salary history at the screening stage. That is, they won't even look at your resume if you don't tell them your past salary. Anyone with experience on how to handle this? I have a strong preference not to disclose mine. Theses firms certainly want all the negotiation leverage while giving you none. I just don't like to give it to them. Any chance to circumvent HR by going to the hiring partner? Appreciate any feedback.

sparty99
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Re: Disclosing Past Salary

Postby sparty99 » Wed Mar 15, 2017 4:08 pm

You apply and hope they overlook you not disclosing salary. But clearly they are salary sensitive if they want that information. Or you can simply disclose your salary range. Or you can put, "salary is negotiable" in your cover letter. There are many answers to this question by doing a google search. However, I would err on not disclosing unless you really want the job. In the end, you can always decline an offer.

Anonymous User
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Re: Disclosing Past Salary

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Mar 15, 2017 4:11 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Hey folks,

This thread applies primarily to mid law and small law, where the salary being negotiated can vary widely. The scenario is where HR requires you to disclose your salary history at the screening stage. That is, they won't even look at your resume if you don't tell them your past salary. Anyone with experience on how to handle this? I have a strong preference not to disclose mine. Theses firms certainly want all the negotiation leverage while giving you none. I just don't like to give it to them. Any chance to circumvent HR by going to the hiring partner? Appreciate any feedback.


Even in big firms you'll have to disclose at the screening interview sometimes. It's not limited to small firms.

Anonymous User
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Re: Disclosing Past Salary

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Mar 15, 2017 4:23 pm

People commonly inflate their salary in those circumstances. I'd say fuck it and do it.

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oshberg28
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Re: Disclosing Past Salary

Postby oshberg28 » Wed Mar 15, 2017 6:13 pm

Anonymous User wrote:People commonly inflate their salary in those circumstances. I'd say fuck it and do it.


No. This is bad advice.

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magnum_law
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Re: Disclosing Past Salary

Postby magnum_law » Wed Mar 15, 2017 6:53 pm

oshberg28 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:People commonly inflate their salary in those circumstances. I'd say fuck it and do it.


No. This is bad advice.


Don't lie. I've heard that this info is commonly verified with former employer's HR dept, along with dates of employment.

Anonymous User
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Re: Disclosing Past Salary

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Mar 15, 2017 7:04 pm

Disclosure: this was for a non-legal corporate position at a giant multinational financial services firm, prior to law school.

Once when confronted with this very conundrum, I told the HR functionary (very politely!) that I would gladly disclose my past salary after-and only after-they disclosed the salary range for the position. The HR functionary equally politely explained that doing that would be against their usual policy, and I smiled sadly and said "Ah, but disclosing my salary without knowing the position's salary range is against my policy."

I still got the job, for what it's worth, but only after telling the HR functionary--and meaning it--that I would not disclose ahead of time, and if they declined to interview me on that basis, well, that was just too bad for the both of us, because I really wanted the job but wasn't willing to roll over before even interviewing.

Obviously, if you're hard up and need the work, do what you gotta do- but don't be afraid to push back a little with nonsense like this. Be unfailingly polite, smile a lot, project the easy confidence that comes from self-esteem instead of the cockiness that comes from ignorance- but when push comes to shove, don't show anyone your belly.

TomGrizz
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Re: Disclosing Past Salary

Postby TomGrizz » Wed Mar 15, 2017 7:05 pm

I'm the anon who refused to disclose for the non-legal job just above. DO NOT LIE ABOUT SALARY. It's very easy to verify.

RaceJudicata
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Re: Disclosing Past Salary

Postby RaceJudicata » Wed Mar 15, 2017 7:22 pm

If position is in philadelphia, this is illegal (obv prob not there), but maybe other cities/states will move towards this rule.

Anonymous User
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Re: Disclosing Past Salary

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Mar 15, 2017 9:05 pm

OP here. Thanks to all the comments. Agreeing with the comments about not lying. If employer asks for pay stub and it does not match up with what you said, the offer will likely be revoked.

RaceJudicata
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Re: Disclosing Past Salary

Postby RaceJudicata » Wed Mar 15, 2017 9:41 pm

Anonymous User wrote:OP here. Thanks to all the comments. Agreeing with the comments about not lying. If employer asks for pay stub and it does not match up with what you said, the offer will likely be revoked.


Not advocating lying whatsoever, but fwiw, idk if it means you'll have offer revoked. My fiance (non lawyer) reported her salary when switching jobs and her salary was X but she reported 2X because about 50% of her comp is incentive/commission based. When new company confirmed with old company, the old company only sent over the salary. New company didn't bat an eye.

That said, I wouldn't risk it either.

Anonymous User
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Re: Disclosing Past Salary

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Mar 16, 2017 12:03 am

RaceJudicata wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:OP here. Thanks to all the comments. Agreeing with the comments about not lying. If employer asks for pay stub and it does not match up with what you said, the offer will likely be revoked.


Not advocating lying whatsoever, but fwiw, idk if it means you'll have offer revoked. My fiance (non lawyer) reported her salary when switching jobs and her salary was X but she reported 2X because about 50% of her comp is incentive/commission based. When new company confirmed with old company, the old company only sent over the salary. New company didn't bat an eye.

That said, I wouldn't risk it either.


My good sir, you are essentially telling me not to steal a loaf of bread and at the same time say that "but you know, I don't think there will be much consequences if you do." :D

Anonymous User
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Re: Disclosing Past Salary

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Mar 16, 2017 2:08 am

Anonymous User wrote:
My good sir, you are essentially telling me not to steal a loaf of bread and at the same time say that "but you know, I don't think there will be much consequences if you do." :D


I wouldn't be able to sleep at night if I knew I had taken advantage of a poor defenseless employer like this.

Anonymous User
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Re: Disclosing Past Salary

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Mar 16, 2017 6:15 am

FWIW disclosing my prior small firm salary for a biglaw interview (amlaw200, but not vault) got me screwed salary wise for a very small market office (1 associate). They did not call to verify. Also, I don't know that any prior employer would disclose salary history without a release from its former employee... and they shouldn't.

RaceJudicata
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Re: Disclosing Past Salary

Postby RaceJudicata » Thu Mar 16, 2017 9:24 am

Anonymous User wrote:
RaceJudicata wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:OP here. Thanks to all the comments. Agreeing with the comments about not lying. If employer asks for pay stub and it does not match up with what you said, the offer will likely be revoked.


Not advocating lying whatsoever, but fwiw, idk if it means you'll have offer revoked. My fiance (non lawyer) reported her salary when switching jobs and her salary was X but she reported 2X because about 50% of her comp is incentive/commission based. When new company confirmed with old company, the old company only sent over the salary. New company didn't bat an eye.

That said, I wouldn't risk it either.


My good sir, you are essentially telling me not to steal a loaf of bread and at the same time say that "but you know, I don't think there will be much consequences if you do." :D


haha pretty much. I'm just the guy that would get caught.

Anonymous User
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Re: Disclosing Past Salary

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Mar 16, 2017 11:55 am

Anonymous User wrote:FWIW disclosing my prior small firm salary for a biglaw interview (amlaw200, but not vault) got me screwed salary wise for a very small market office (1 associate). They did not call to verify. Also, I don't know that any prior employer would disclose salary history without a release from its former employee... and they shouldn't.


That scenario is exactly what I am trying to avoid. However, employer can simply ask for pay stub from you. No need to contact prior employer to know your salary history.

Anonymous User
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Re: Disclosing Past Salary

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Mar 16, 2017 12:31 pm

People lie about their salary all the time.

ballouttacontrol
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Re: Disclosing Past Salary

Postby ballouttacontrol » Sat Mar 18, 2017 2:57 am

If my last salary was way low bc small firm or whatever I'd probably lie within reason. I do this all the time, I mean how am I supposed to put a total salary in one exact $ number.

If I really needed to defend a discrepancy I'd just say I was including bonus, employer 401k and HSA contributions etc...

RaceJudicata
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Re: Disclosing Past Salary

Postby RaceJudicata » Sat Mar 18, 2017 7:45 am

ballouttacontrol wrote:If my last salary was way low bc small firm or whatever I'd probably lie within reason. I do this all the time, I mean how am I supposed to put a total salary in one exact $ number.

If I really needed to defend a discrepancy I'd just say I was including bonus, employer 401k and HSA contributions etc...


I totally agree w/ this logic, however, i doubt it'll ever get to a point where you get a chance to explain ... more likely to just get rejected (that is, if the employer cares in the first place)

Anonymous User
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Re: Disclosing Past Salary

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Mar 18, 2017 4:43 pm

ballouttacontrol wrote:If my last salary was way low bc small firm or whatever I'd probably lie within reason. I do this all the time, I mean how am I supposed to put a total salary in one exact $ number.

If I really needed to defend a discrepancy I'd just say I was including bonus, employer 401k and HSA contributions etc...


In that scenario, it would be best to not disclose or list what your range. You certainly would not want to disclose your salary if you are going from government to a private law firm. However, you should never lie.




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