The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit has further clarified the scope and applicability of the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Play Act, making it clear that the Act cannot “save” a worker’s untimely suit where the worker failed to prove a viable disparate pay claim?. In Davis v. Bombardier Transportation Holdings, No.14-289 (2nd Cir. July 22, 2015), the Court affirmed a lower court’s decision to dismiss the discrimination suit of a worker on the grounds that her claims of disability bias resulting in a demotion with attendant pay reduction were time barred.
The Court agreed that the plaintiff did not file her disability discrimination claim with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission within 300 days of her demotion, as required by the Americans with Disabilities Act. She asserted that the provision of the Ledbetter Act that a claim for pay discrimination accrues with each paycheck applied to her claim and rendered it timely. In an issue of first impression for the Court, the Second Circuit rejected such an assertion holding that to get the benefit of the Ledbetter Act’s extended limitations period, a plaintiff must plead and prove that she was paid less than similarly situated employees outside the protected categories.
Since the Ledbetter Act was signed into law in 2009, its limits have been the subject of considerable debate – in and out of court. This decision helps to further define its scope and intent.