Tuesday, July 31, 2007
Breaking News! House Passes Ledbetter Amendment to Title VII, the ADA, ADEA and the Rehabiliation Act of 1973
On July 30, 2007, the House approved H. R. 2831 by a vote of 215-187 which amends Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967, the Americans With Disabilities Act of 1990, and the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 to clarify that a discriminatory compensation decision or other practice that is unlawful under such Acts occurs each time compensation is paid pursuant to the discriminatory compensation decision or other practice, and for other purposes.
This Bill is intended to legislatively over-rule the Supreme Court's decision in Ledbetter v. Goodyear, 550 U.S. __(2007) which I previously discussed here. In Ledbetter, the Supreme Court issued a 5-4 decision holding that the 180/300 day time period to file a charge of discrimination with the EEOC runs from the date the discriminatory decision was initially made as opposed to when the employee actually received her paycheck.
Before this Bill was passed, President Bush indicated that he will veto this legislation. The President's statement is available here. The President strongly oppposes this legislation, reasoning in part:
Meaningful statutes of limitations in these sorts of fact-intensive cases are crucial to the fair administration of justice. The prompt assertion of employment discrimination permits employers to defend against – and allows employees to prove – claims that arise from employment decisions instead of having to litigate claims that are long past. In such cases, evidence often will have been lost, memories will have faded, and witnesses will have moved on.
Moreover, effective statutes of limitations benefit employees by encouraging the prompt discovery, assertion, and resolution of employment discrimination claims so that workplace discrimination can be remedied without delay.
Mitchell H. Rubinstein