Court to Review Two Title VII Rulings Next Year

It’s onto the next round of employment law cases for the U.S. Supreme Court.  As the dust was settling from yesterday’s blockbuster Hobby Lobby ruling on the Affordable Care Act’s contraception mandate, the justices today granted review in two new Title VII cases that may have wide-ranging impact.

In one case, the court will decide whether the Pregnancy Discrimination Act requires an employer to accommodate the work restrictions of pregnant employees when it does so for nonpregnant employees with temporary impairments. The case involves a female driver for UPS. She’s asking the court to review a Fourth Circuit ruling that the delivery company didn’t have to accommodate her work restrictions even though it offers light duty to injured workers, to persons with disabilities under the Americans With Disabilities Act and to drivers who temporarily lose their Department of Transportation certification.

I wrote about the Fourth Circuit’s ruling and about the issue in the broader context of what one report called rampant bias against female employees.

The second case the justices accepted for review is on whether the EEOC’s pre-lawsuit efforts to settle EEOC charges under Title VII is subject to court review. The appeal is from a Seventh Circuit ruling that Title VII doesn’t permit this judicial review, which makes this court the outlier. All other appeals courts have ruled the other way–that EEOC’s efforts are subject to judicial scrutiny.

The respective cases are Young v. United Parcel Service Inc., No. 12-1226 and Mach Mining LLC v. EEOC, No. 13-1019.

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