U.S. Supreme Court Clarifies Procedures for Federal Employment Discrimination Law Claims: Supreme Court Unanimously Holds That Title VII’s Pre-Suit Administrative Charge Requirement Is Not Jurisdictional and Can Be Waived If Employers Do Not Timely Object.

Sullivan & Cromwell LLP - June 4, 2019
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In Fort Bend County v. Davis, a unanimous Supreme Court held that Title VII’s requirement that a claimant file an administrative charge with the EEOC or comparable state or local agency prior to filing a lawsuit is a “claim-processing rule[] that must be timely raised” by a defendant rather than a “jurisdictional requirement” that can be raised at any time during the proceeding, and therefore is subject to waiver. This decision resolved a split in the circuit courts of appeals. As a result of this decision, employers must object to an employee’s failure to exhaust the administrative process in a timely manner or else the defense will be waived notwithstanding the employee’s failure to comply with Title VII’s administrative requirements.