Washington, D.C. Wal-Mart Stores has asked the Supreme Court to throw out a massive class action lawsuit alleging gender discrimination overpay for female workers. The suit is the largest class-action employment discrimination case in U.S. history.
In April, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that a gender discrimination class-action lawsuit against Wal-Mart can proceed and go to trial. The lawsuit, first filed by six woman federal court in June 2001, alleges the chain discriminated against women in promotions, pay, training and job assignments.
The case, known as Dukes v. Wal-Mart, includes the 1.5 million women who have worked at any of the company's 4,000 retail stores nationwide since Dec. 26, 1998.
The company, based in Bentonville, Ark., filed its appeal with the Supreme Court on Wednesday. Wal-Mart could face billions of dollars in legal damages if the lawsuit is heard and it loses.
If Dukes reaches the Supreme Court, the case could set a precedent for employment discrimination class actions.