Thursday, April 30, 2015

Supreme Court Says Required Conciliation Is Reviewable Prerequisite To EEOC Title VII Lawsuit

Yesterday in Mach Mining LLC v. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, (Sup. Ct., April 29, 2015), the U.S. Supreme Court held that the requirement in Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act that the EEOC attempt conciliation before filing an employment discrimination lawsuit is a judicially enforceable prerequisite to suing. However the scope of review of whether the EEOC has met this requirement is narrow:
the EEOC must inform the employer about the specific allegation.... Such notice properly describes both what the employer has done and which employees ... have suffered as a result. And the EEOC must try to engage the employer in some form of discussion (whether written or oral), so as to give the employer an opportunity to remedy the allegedly discriminatory practice. Judicial review of those requirements (and nothing else) ensures that the Commission complies with the statute. At the same time, that relatively barebones review allows the EEOC to exercise all the expansive discretion Title VII gives it to decide how to conduct conciliation efforts and when to end them.
The Court's unanimous opinion was written by Justice Kagan.  Wall Street Journal reported on the decision.