High court case could foil government suits over job bias

Jan 11, 2015 10:45 AM by News Staff

WASHINGTON (AP) - The Supreme Court could put the brakes on the Obama administration's growing crackdown against companies facing claims of discrimination against women, minorities and other protected groups.

Here's the issue: Can employers defend discrimination lawsuits by arguing government lawyers didn't try hard enough to settle claims.

The justices hear arguments Tuesday.

The case involves an Illinois mining company sued for failing to hire any female workers despite applications from many qualified women.

Companies say the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission is turning individual complaints of bias into high-stakes class-action cases on behalf of dozens or even hundreds of workers.

The strategy has netted over $100 million in judgments and settlements from more than 50 companies since 2011.

The EEOC says the bigger cases send a stronger message about complying with the law.

Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.


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