On March 1, 2011, the Supreme Court announced its decision in Staub v. Proctor Hospital. The question in this case was under what circumstances an employer may be held liable under the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Act (USERRA) for employment discrimination based on the animus of an employee who influenced, but did not actually make, the final employment decision.
In an opinion delivered by Justice Scalia, the Court held that "if a supervisor performs an act motivated by antimilitary animus that is intended by the supervisor to cause an adverse employment action, and if that act is a proximate cause of the ultimate employment action, then the employer is liable under USERRA." Chief Justice Roberts and Justices Kennedy, Ginsburg, Breyer, and Sotomayer joined Justice Scalia’s opinion. Justice Alito filed an opinion concurring in the judgment, which Justice Thomas joined. Justice Kagan took no part in the consideration or decision of the case.
To discuss the case, we have Victoria Dorfman, who is a partner at Jones Day. Ms. Dorfman is on an amicus brief in support of the respondent.