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MRR Legislative Update: Senate Introduces SB 268 to Reform Employment Discrimination Cases

By: Tami Zupkow Hannon, Esq.

On February 1, 2016, SB 268 was introduced in the Ohio Senate. This bill, if passed, would reform the current state anti-discrimination laws. Of particular note, the proposed bill:

  • Reduces the time to file a state law discrimination claim from the current 6 years to 1 year;
  • Enlarges the current 180 day time frame to file a charge with the Ohio Civil Rights Commission to 365 days;
  • Adopts damage caps on the amount of punitive and non-economic damages that can be awarded in a discrimination claim. The cap would be on a sliding scale based on employer size with damages ranging from $50,000 to $300,000;
  • Refines the definition of “employer” to remove reference to “any person acting directly or indirectly in the interest of an employer;”
  • Clarifies that personal liability should not be imposed on managers, supervisors or coworkers for employment based discrimination claims (but note that personal liability may still be possible under the aiding and abetting provisions of R.C. §4112.02(J)); and
  • Limits the ability to file a civil suit in some instances where the claim was pending or previously filed with the Ohio Civil Rights Commission.

As the bill has only recently been introduced, it is likely that there will be revisions to the language as additional comments, debate and analysis is conducted. We will continue to monitor the status of this bill and provide updates as it proceeds through the General Assembly.


For questions or more information on “Senate Introduces SB 268 to Reform Employment Discrimination Cases,” contact:


Tami Zupkow Hannon  – MRR Cleveland
Partner
Phone: 440.424.0009
Fax: 440.248.8861
Email: thannon@mrrlaw.com

MRR Ohio Legislation Updates: October 30, 2015 – November 12, 2015

Notes from the House of Representatives:

  • H.B. 389 was introduced to amend various sections of the Ohio Revised Code to enact the Ohio Fairness Act to prohibit discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity or expression, to add mediation to the list of informal methods by which the Ohio Civil Rights Commission may use to induce compliance with Ohio’s Civil Rights Law before instituting a formal hearing, and to uphold existing religious exemptions under Ohio Civil Rights Law. (Introduced 11-5-15)

Notes from the Senate:

  • S.B. 234 was referred to the Committee on Education. S.B. 234 would require specified public and nonpublic school officials to search the Uniform Statewide Automated Child Welfare Information System within thirty days of a student’s enrollment and to notify the county public children services agency if specified information is found during that search. (Introduced 10-27-15; Referred to Committee 11-10-15)

For questions or more information on MRR’s Ohio Legislation Updates, contact:

Stacy V. Pollock  – MRR Columbus
Phone: 614.324.0163
Email: spollock@mrrlaw.com

Stacy Pollock 8860