Don Livingston Quoted on EEOC Supreme Court Case by Law360

Law360, for its article, “Mach Mining-EEOC High Court Case Could Be ‘Game Changer,’” quoted Akin Gump labor and employment partner Donald Livingston on the potential impact of Mach Mining LLC v. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), which the U.S. Supreme Court has accepted for review during its next Term.  The Court’s eventual decision will determine, among other things, how transparent the EEOC must be during conciliation.

Livingston, a former EEOC general counsel, noted that the Title VII-mandated conciliation obligation provides a “window” into EEOC’s closed-door efforts to settle bias claims before entering a courtroom. He added, “If the EEOC were to win this case, then that window closes. The EEOC would then be able to engage in all sorts of mischief without anyone ever being able to know about it or hold the EEOC responsible for its failure to comply with its statutory obligation.”

He also noted that the agency frequently does not afford employers adequate opportunities to resolve claims before being charged: “There have been many, many times when the EEOC is so desirous of bringing a lawsuit that it doesn't give the respondent a fair shot to settle until after the lawsuit's been filed, and that's just plainly inconsistent with the intent of Congress when it enacted Title VII.”