In a motion filed in US District Court for the Northern District of California, the country?s largest retailer argues that the suit fails to follow procedures put forward in the1964 Civil Rights Act.
Since the plaintiffs are from different states, Wal-Mart argues that the law requires that the suit be filed in the federal district where the company has its headquarters, in Wal-Mart?s case, the Western District of Arkansas.
Six former and current female employees filed charges of gender discrimination against the retailer in June, who charged that the company discriminated against its female employees in promotions, compensation and job assignments in violation of the Civil Rights Act.
The plaintiffs in what is potentially the largest class action of its kind are from five different states, and during the period covered by the suit only two of the women had worked in northern California, the state where the suit was filed. The remaining women worked in Illinois, Ohio, Texas and Florida.
In addition to the sexual discrimination suit, Wal-Mart was recently sued for unfair labor practices in a suit filed on behalf of 20,000 current and former Wal-Mart employees, and for discriminating against a disabled job candidate in contravention of the Americans with Disabilities Act.
Wal-Mart, which employs 962,000 workers in the US, denies the discrimination charges.