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Bracewell Represents Dallas Morning News in Age Discrimination Win

April 12, 2011

DALLAS Bracewell & Giuliani LLP represented The Dallas Morning News, Belo Corp. and other defendants in a win against 18 former employees, who filed a lawsuit under the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) and the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA), after they were laid off in a round of job cuts in 2004. U.S. Magistrate Judge Paul Stickney with the United States District Court for the Northern District of Texas dismissed the suit and granted the defendants' request for summary judgment, ruling that the defendants did not inappropriately fire the employees based on age-protected status. The Court also found that the defendants fully complied with their disclosure obligations under ERISA.

The ruling comes after more than five years of litigation and is significant in that it represents one of the first decisions out of the Fifth Circuit holding that subjectivity in a layoff selection process is not a proper basis for a claim of disparate impact (unintentional discrimination) under the ADEA.

Bracewell attorneys that worked on this matter include:

Partners: Robert E. Sheeder and Morgan D. Meyer

Associates: Christopher L. Maberry, Lauren A. West and Colesen C. Evans