Banning the “Pink Tax” Was Enacted as Part of the FY 2021 Budget and a Key Component of the Governor’s 2020 Women’s Agenda
(This press release has been cut for brevity. Link to the full release at the end of article.)
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced that starting today, new reforms go into effect prohibiting businesses from charging a “pink tax,” otherwise known as the practice of charging different prices for “substantially similar” consumer goods or services that are marketed to different genders.
In April the Governor signed the FY 2021 New York State Budget which included the Governor’s proposal to ban the “Pink Tax.” The new measure requires certain service providers to provide price lists for standard services upon request and notifies them that gender-based price discrimination is prohibited under State law. Businesses that violate the law will be subject to civil penalties.
Anyone selling products or providing services can avoid running afoul of the new law by ensuring that any price difference is based upon the following:
- The amount of time it took to manufacture such goods or provide such services
- The difficulty in manufacturing such goods or offering such services
- The cost incurred in manufacturing such goods or offering such services
- The labor used in manufacturing such goods or providing such services
- The materials used in manufacturing such goods or providing such services
- Any other gender-neutral reason for having increased the cost of such goods or services
Violations of the law are subject to the court ordered enjoinment of such sales, restitution to consumers, up to a $250 fine for the first violation, and up to $500 fine for any subsequent violations.
The New York State Division of Consumer Protection serves to educate, assist and empower New York State consumers. Starting September 30th, if you find a product or service offered for sale in New York State that does not comply with the new law, you may contact the Division of Consumer Protection at 800-697-1220 Monday to Friday, 8:30am to 4:30pm or file a complaint online at www.dos.ny.gov/consumerprotection. The Division can also be reached via Twitter at @NYSConsumer or Facebook at www.facebook.com/nysconsumer.