Updating a series of blog posts we brought you last year, AutoZone has dropped its challenge of a record-setting pregnancy discrimination verdict of $185 million.
According to ThinkProgress.org, the company abandoned its appeal in a California federal court last month.
The company had claimed that the verdict should have been overturned due to alleged attorney misconduct during the initial trial, which took place in San Diego.
The woman involved in the lawsuit claimed that she was harassed and treated differently at work after she told a district manager at a store that she was pregnant. She said that she was eventually fired after her managers accused her of misplacing $400 from a register, with a loss prevention manager disputing the store’s report.
The woman also claimed that AutoZone had a “glass ceiling” culture that kept women from being promoted. At the time she was employed, she said that just 10 of the company’s 98 stores in the San Diego area had female managers.
At one point during her trial, a district manager for the company allegedly testified that a supervisor reprimanded him for hiring women. Additionally, another manager claimed that executives with the company offered one employee “a promotion if he fired all the women in his stores.”
Jurors ruled in favor of the woman, saying that AutoZone violated multiple labor laws, including the Pregnancy Discrimination Act (PDA). She was awarded $185 million in punitive damages, as well as $872,000 in compensatory damages.
Can I Sue an Employer if I’m Fired for Being Pregnant?
This case is a good example of the PDA in action, which requires that workers who become pregnant be treated like other employees for all employment-related purposes, including promotion opportunities.
If you experience harassment, job loss or miss an opportunity at a promotion due to a pregnancy, it may be in your best interest to speak to our Los Angeles labor attorneys. We can review your claims and determine if your employer violated the PDA or other labor laws.
Kesluk, Silverstein & Jacob– Los Angeles employment attorneys