Maine Legal Developments: Hairstyle Discrimination, Agreements Prohibiting Disclosure of Unlawful Discrimination, and Payment of Accrued Vacation


On August 8, 2022, three pieces of newly enacted state legislation go into effect, directly impacting private employers operating within the state. First, along with a number of other states,1 Maine has enacted Creating a Respectful and Open World for Natural Hair (“CROWN”) Act, which bans discrimination on the basis of natural, protective, or cultural hairstyles within the workplace. Second, Maine enacted legislation limiting mandatory non-disclosure agreements by private employers for applicants or employees waiving or limiting any right to report or discuss unlawful discrimination, retaliation, or harassment that occurs in the workplace or at work-related events. Finally, Maine enacted H.P. 160 - L.D. 225, which requires that private employers operating within the state pay out all accrued, unused vacation leave upon an individual’s employment separation.

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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