RECENT FEDERAL APPELLATE COURT RULING ASSISTS FLORIDA EMPLOYERS IN THEIR DEFENSE AGAINST EMPLOYMENT DISCRIMINATION LAWSUITS

A recent decision from the federal appellate court that decides the legal standards for employment discrimination claims in Florida federal courts made it much easier for employers to defend against employment discrimination lawsuits.  Under federal law, a plaintiff’s burden in an intentional-discrimination claim includes the burden to present evidence of other individuals who are “similarly situated”, i.e. “comparators”. The Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals has historically interpreted the term “similarly situated” in divergent ways, causing uncertainty as to the application of that standard. In its recent decision in Lewis v. City of Union City, Georgia, 918 F.3d 1213 (11th Cir. 2019), the Eleventh Circuit clarified the standard for comparator evidence in intentional-discrimination cases as “similarly situated in all material respects.” Peter Mavrick is a Florida employment lawyer who defends businesses and…

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