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Jury Rejects EEOCs Age and Disability Discrimination Charges

On June 8, 2007, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (the “EEOC”) filed suit under the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (“ADEA”), 29 U.S.C. § 621 et seq., and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (“ADA”), 42 U.S.C. § 12111 et seq., against Defendant Bayrock Corporation on behalf of Ms. Patsy Payne. The EEOC claimed that Bayrock fired Ms. Payne because of her age, 68½, and because it perceived her to be disabled in the major life activity of walking. The EEOC sought backpay, liquidated damages, compensatory and punitive damages, and injunctive relief. Swift Currie attorneys Anandhi S. Rajan and C.W. Tab Billingsley, Jr. were retained by Bayrock to defend against the EEOC's claims.

Ms. Rajan and Mr. Billingsley tried the case before a jury in federal court from March 16-20, 2009. On March 20, 2009, a jury rendered a verdict in favor of Backrock, finding that the EEOC failed to establish by a preponderance of the evidence that Bayrock fired Ms. Payne because of her age in violation of the ADEA or because of a perceived disability in violation of the ADA. Specifically, by means of a special verdict form, the jury found that the EEOC did not establish by a preponderance of the evidence that Ms. Payne’s age was a motivating factor in Bayrock’s decision to terminate her. The jury also found that the EEOC did not establish by a preponderance of the evidence that Bayrock perceived Ms. Payne to be substantially limited in a major life activity.

EEOC v. Bayrock Corporation, Northern District of Georgia, Atlanta Division, Civil Action No. 1:07cv-1331-CC

Counsel for Defendant: Anandhi S. Rajan and C.W. Tab Billingsley, Jr.
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