Gender Discrimination in Pay and Promotions: Emerging Litigation Threat

Employer Strategies for Avoiding and Defending Lawsuits

Recording of a 90-minute CLE webinar with Q&A

Conducted on Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Recorded event now available

or call 1-800-926-7926
Course Materials

This CLE course will provide guidance for employers' counsel on strategies to avoid and defend lawsuits that allege gender-based discrimination in compensation and promotion practices.


Gender-based pay disparity claims are a top concern for employers, due to the recent certification of a class of more than 500,000 female employees in Dukes v. Wal-Mart Stores Inc., a $250+ million jury verdict in Velez v. Novartis Corp., and the federal government’s focus on the issue.

A flood of individual and class action lawsuits from employees alleging discrimination in pay and promotion practices is expected as a result. Avoiding and defending the lawsuits could cost companies millions of dollars in litigation expenses and compliance costs, in addition to back wages.

To mitigate legal risks, employers and their counsel should immediately audit their compensation and promotion policies and practices to determine whether disparities exist that are arguably discriminatory, and should make any necessary corrections.

Listen as our authoritative panel of employment law attorneys examines the current legal landscape related to gender discrimination in pay and promotions. The panel will recommend steps employers and their counsel should take to avoid liability for past and future pay decisions and will discuss strategies for defending lawsuits.



  1. Recent legal developments
    1. Dukes v. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.
    2. Velez v. Novartis Corp.
    3. Other case law developments
    4. Legislative developments
  2. Best practices to avoid or minimize liability
    1. Audit compensation systems and practices for disparities in pay
    2. Ensure that all future compensation analyses with counsel are privileged
    3. Eliminate systems that have discriminatory effect
    4. Document bases for past decisions and develop objective criteria for future decisions
    5. Revise record retention policies and practices
    6. Train supervisors and managers
  3. Strategies for defending lawsuits


The panel will review these and other key questions:

  • What is the anticipated impact of recent lawsuits, settlements and legislative activity on the litigation of wage discrimination claims?
  • What actions should employers and their counsel take immediately to reduce exposure to litigation and damages?
  • What strategies have been effective for employment litigators defending lawsuits alleging gender discrimination in pay and promotions?

Following the speaker presentations, you'll have an opportunity to get answers to your specific questions during the interactive Q&A.


Margaret A. Keane
Margaret A. Keane

Dewey & LeBoeuf

She is a litigation partner and co-chairs the firm's Global Employment Dispute Resolution Practice. She represents...  |  Read More

Michael Westheimer
Michael Westheimer

Of Counsel
Baker & McKenzie

He handles individual and class action litigation in state and federal courts, administrative hearings, arbitrations,...  |  Read More

Jane M. McFetridge
Jane M. McFetridge

Managing Partner
Jackson Lewis

She handles employment litigation, including both state and federal claims, and individual and class action suits. Her...  |  Read More

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