May 13, 2005
The 10 Most Bizarre Employment Cases of 2004
Fondly remembered old friend, Gerry Skoning (Senior Partner, Seyfarth Shaw, Chicago office) is at it again. Here's his top ten list of most bizarre employment cases of 2004. My favorite only ranks seventh on Gerry's list.
LUST TAKES ON MATTRESS FIRM
The 7th Circuit has ruled that punitive damages awarded to an employee in Lust v. Sealy Inc., a sex discrimination case, were excessive. Tracy Lust was promoted by Sealy to a position in its Madison, Wis., office two months after being passed over for a position in its Chicago office -- and shortly after she filed a charge with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. The court pointed out that her supervisor "had a history of making sexist remarks to Lust such as 'You're being a blonde again today.'" But the usually dour Judge Richard A. Posner, in a rare moment of levity, quipped: "Lust is blonde; Sealy points out irrelevantly that blondes are not a statutorily protected class, which will disappoint hair colorists.
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