New Mexico Bank Settles EEOC Suit

May 9, 2014 ( – BOK Financial Corporation will settle a lawsuit brought by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), which alleged discrimination based on both age and gender.

The Albuquerque, New Mexico-based BOK, which does business as the Bank of Albuquerque, will pay $230,000 and furnish other relief under the settlement. Besides the monetary relief, BOK has also agreed to refrain from any future discrimination; post an anti-discrimination notice; provide staff training; and to report to the EEOC on its compliance with these terms.

The EEOC originally filed its suit, EEOC v. BOK Financial Corporation dba Bank of Albuquerque, (CV 11-01132-ALB-RCB-LAM), in 2012 with the U.S. District Court for the District of New Mexico in Albuquerque (see “EEOC Alleges Bank Fired Employees Due to Age and Gender”).

The suit alleged that the bank fired two managers, Elizabeth Morantes and Yolanda Fernandez, who were long-time employees, because of their gender and because they were over 40 years of age. The EEOC said the bank’s purported reasons for firing the women were based on criteria that were not applied to younger male managers and employees.

Such alleged conduct violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex, as well as the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, which bars discrimination on the basis of age, for those 40 and older.