With the age of artificial intelligence unfolding, products aimed at automating the recruiting and hiring process are hitting the market with increasing frequency.  Companies have been utilizing AI for tasks such as screening resumes, and even interviewing candidates and assessing whether they will be successful employees.
Continue Reading New York City Introduces Bill to Regulate the Use of AI in Employment Decisions

Dollar General and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission recently settled a six-year-old Title VII lawsuit.  The EEOC brought its race discrimination claim on behalf of a Charging Party and a class of Black job applicants, alleging that Dollar General’s use of criminal justice history information in the hiring process had a disparate impact on Black applicants.
Continue Reading The EEOC Settles Six-Year-Old Lawsuit Attacking Background Check Policy

The United States District Court for the Western District of New York recently granted an early dismissal of a class action lawsuit prior to class certification. According to plaintiffs in the case, the employer’s criminal background check policy for job applicants illegally discriminated against African-American job candidates.
Continue Reading Federal Court Finds That General Statistical Data Is Not Enough to Show That No-Conviction Hiring Policy Was Discriminatory

In late January 2019, the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (“ADEA”) does not allow outside job applicants to bring disparate impact claims.  The plaintiff in the case, Dale Kleber, an attorney, is now asking the Supreme Court to review that decision.
Continue Reading Attorney Asks Supreme Court to Review Seventh Circuit’s Interpretation of Disparate Impact Claims Under the ADEA

On October 5, 2016, the Eleventh Circuit, sitting en banc, held that an unsuccessful job applicant “cannot sue an employer for disparate impact [under § 4(a)(2) of the ADEA] because [an] applicant has no ‘status as an employee.’”
Continue Reading Eleventh Circuit: Job Applicants May Not Sue For Disparate Impact Under § 4(a)(2) Of The ADEA

The Texas Supreme Court is considering a case that could have important implications to disparate impact analysis, including on criminal background checks. The case also foreshadows further challenges from the Texas Attorney General to aggressive positions taken by federal enforcement agencies in regard to disparate impact.
Continue Reading Supreme Court Case Foreshadows Texas Attorney General Attacks on Disparate Impact Analysis

On April 9, 2014, the Sixth Circuit of Appeals not only affirmed summary judgment in EEOC v. Kaplan Higher Education Corp., et al. but also chastised the EEOC for applying a flawed methodology in its attempts to prove that using credit checks as a pre-employment screen had an unlawful disparate impact against African-American applicants.
Continue Reading EEOC Suffers Another Loss In Its Crusade Against Employer Background Checks

On October 7, 2013, the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit upheld the imposition of fees and costs against the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) in EEOC v. Peoplemark, Inc., Case No. 11-2582, for knowingly pursuing a meritless claim in which the agency alleged that Peoplemark’s criminal background check policy had a disparate impact on minority job applicants.  The EEOC recently has moved aggressively to enforce its April 2012 guidance regarding the use of criminal background checks in hiring.  That guidance appears to suggest that any criminal background check policy may be vulnerable to an EEOC enforcement action under a disparate impact theory—regardless of its terms and the manner in which it is implemented—solely on the basis of national data that show disproportionate rates of incarceration for African-Americans and Hispanics.  However, the Peoplemark decision, of which the EEOC presently seeks en banc review, also heralds an emerging pattern of judicial skepticism towards the agency’s enforcement tactics and its efforts to pursue disparate impact claims premised solely on national statistical evidence that is unrelated to any specific employer practice.


Continue Reading Courts Begin to Narrow the Scope of the EEOC’s Most Recent Background Check Guidance

Since the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Wal-Mart v. Dukes, there has been a significant amount of educated speculation about the effect of that decision on class action litigation in general and more particularly on class actions involving claims of employment discrimination.  Dukes is seen as creating an impassable barrier for class actions claiming discrimination in multiple locations based on excess subjectivity arising from decentralized decision-making.  Dukes instead focuses the inquiry on the existence and discriminatory effect of enterprise-wide policies such as an employment test or standardized performance criterion.  The question remains: what constitutes an enterprise-wide policy or practice?  This is a question that has challenged practitioners since General Tel. Co. of the Southwest v. Falcon, 457 U.S. 147, 159 n. 15 (1982), and before.

Continue Reading The Issue Class Action: Another Tool For Employment Discrimination Litigation

In its decision in Ricci v. DeStefano, 129 S.Ct. 2658 (2009), the Supreme Court sought to resolve a conflict between the “twin pillars of Title VII,” the Act’s disparate-impact and disparate-treatment provisions.  Ricci involved a promotional examination administered by the City of New Haven.  After candidates took the examination, the City refused to certify