Employers More Often Losers in Discrimination Cases

November 16, 2009 (PLANSPONSOR.com) – According to the latest study from Jury Verdict Research, the median award for all types of employment claims rose 60% in the past year, from $204,000 to $326,640, and discrimination verdicts rose 16%, from $208,000 to $241,119.

The median settlement amount was the highest in the past decade at $90,000 — a 20% jump over the previous year, according to a blog entry from Manpower.

Employers won only 39% of discrimination lawsuits in the past year, tied for the worst win rate in the past decade, the blog posting said.  The lowest win rate (33%) was in age discrimination cases and the highest (52%) was in disability discrimination cases.

Employers seem to be better off in federal court, where they won 43% of the cases versus 37% in state court.  In addition, the median federal award was 39% lower than the median state award ($164,925 versus $270,000).

Sex discrimination was the most common claim (35%), followed by race (26%), disability (16%), age (13%), and “other,” including pregnancy, religion, national origin and sexual orientation (10%). Age discrimination claims generated the biggest verdicts, followed by disability, sex, and race.

Manufacturing/industrial employers saw the biggest verdicts, followed by government, service/retail, and transportation.

The study report can be ordered from http://www.shoplrp.com/product/p-2601.EPL09.html .