Frank C. Morris, Jr., Member of the Firm in the Litigation and Employee Benefits practices, in the firm’s Washington, DC, office, was quoted in Law360, in “High Court Makes It Tougher to Sink Job Bias Claims,” by Braden Campbell. (Read the full version – subscription required.)
Following is an excerpt:
The U.S. Supreme Court ruled unanimously Monday that federal courts may be able to hear discrimination claims under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act even if workers don’t bring them to the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission or state workplace bias watchdogs first.
The high court said Title VII’s requirement that workers give the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission or a state enforcer a chance to resolve their claims before bringing them in court is not “jurisdictional,” reviving a Fort Bend County, Texas, worker’s religious discrimination suit. Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg penned the opinion.
Monday’s ruling in Fort Bend County v. Davis did not nullify Title VII’s requirement that job bias claimants file charges with the EEOC or state agencies before going to court. But it does make clear that employers can lose the defense that the accuser didn’t comply with the charge-filing hurdle if they wait too long to assert it. …
Epstein Becker Green attorney Frank Morris said Justice Ginsburg was clear that employers can push back against claims not brought to the EEOC.
“It’s not a case that’s going to change the practice dramatically, except for people who weren’t paying enough attention,” Morris said.