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The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights

The Nation's Premier Civil and Human Rights Coalition

The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights  & The Leadership Conference Education Fund
The Nation's Premier Civil and Human Rights Coalition

Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act

The Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act was signed into law on January 29, 2009.

The law reverses a damaging Supreme Court decision in Ledbetter v. Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. (2007) that restricted an employee's ability to file claims to 180 days from the date that the first discriminatory pay decision was made. The Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act makes clear that each discriminatory paycheck is a separate act of discrimination that can be challenged in court.

About the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act

2009 Legislation

2007/2008 Legislation

Ledbetter v. Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co.

By a 5-4 majority, the Supreme Court held that the Title VII only allowed victims to file a claim for pay discrimination within 180 days of the original pay-setting decision. Nearly all of the federal courts had previously interpreted Title VII to allow claims within 180 days of the last paycheck.

In other words, under this decision, if an employer decides to deny an employee a raise based on her gender, that employee must bring a claim within 180 days of the employer’s decision even though she is unable to readily determine how much her male peers are making and what raises they are receiving, and even though she continues to receive reduced paychecks well after the 180-day period.

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