News & Events

June 1, 2015

An Active Term: Supreme Court Employment Cases of 2015

  • June 1, 2015
  • Publication: MSBA Section of Labor and Employment Law Newsletter
  • Related Attorneys: Hope Eastman
  • Related Practice Areas: Employment Law

The Supreme Court has issued opinions in a number of significant employment law cases during its 2015 term. Additionally the Court is considering at least one case which is not strictly an employment case, but which will have important effects on employers.

Decided Cases

This term, the Court decided six employment-related cases, one involving religious accommodation, one involving the EEOC conciliation requirement, one involving the Pregnancy Discrimination Act, one involving the FLSA, one involving whistleblower protection for federal employees, and one on the DOL interpretive guidance on the exempt status of mortgage brokers.

EEOC v. Abercrombie & Fitch Stores, Inc., No. 14-86, decided June 1, 2015

In its most recent employment law ruling, the Court made clear that an applicant may prevail on a claim of religious discrimination by showing simply that her need for an accommodation was the motivating factor behind the employer's decision not to hire her. Overruling the Tenth Circuit, the Court held that the applicant was not required to show that the employer had actual knowledge of her need for a religious accommodation. 

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