Microsoft Gender Class Action Lawsuit

Microsoft Gender Discrimination Class Action Lawsuit

UPDATE: On March 8, 2016, the district court denied Microsoft’s motion to dismiss the case.  The court ruled that discovery shall proceed based on Plaintiffs’ current class definition, which includes all current and former female technical professionals employed by Microsoft in the U.S. since July 18, 2010.  The court gave Plaintiffs thirty days to file an amended complaint pleading their disparate impact claim in more detail.  The amended complaint will be filed on or about April 7, 2016. Read a copy of the court’s order here.

On September 16, 2015, a gender discrimination class action lawsuit was filed against Microsoft Corporation. The class action, Moussouris v. Microsoft Corporation, was brought by a former female Microsoft technical professional on behalf of herself and all current and former female technical professionals employed by Microsoft in the U.S. since July 18, 2010. On October 27, 2015, an amended complaint was filed, adding current Microsoft employees Holly Muenchow and Dana Piermarini as named plaintiffs, in addition to Ms. Moussouris.

Allegations Of Sex Discrimination In The Workplace By Microsoft

The class action complaint alleges that Microsoft has engaged in systemic and pervasive discrimination against female employees in technical and engineering roles (“female technical employees”) with respect to performance evaluations, pay, promotions, and other terms and conditions of employment. The unchecked gender bias that pervades Microsoft’s corporate culture has resulted in female technical professionals receiving less compensation than similar men, the promotion of men over equally or more qualified women, and less favorable performance evaluation of female technical professionals compared to male peers.

The complaint alleges that the disadvantage to female technical employees in pay and promotion is not isolated or exceptional, but rather the predictable result of Microsoft’s policies and practices and lack of proper accountability measures to ensure fairness, and that Microsoft has implemented these policies and practices despite knowing that they have a long-standing disparate impact on female technical employees.

The complaint further alleges that Microsoft’s continuing policy, pattern, and practice of sex discrimination against female technical employees violates federal and state laws, including Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Washington Law Against Discrimination.

Relief Sought in Microsoft Gender Discrimination Lawsuit

The lawsuit seeks back pay as well as monetary damages, including punitive damages, sustained as a result of Microsoft’s unlawful discrimination.

The lawsuit also seeks several orders, including:

  1. An injunction against Microsoft to keep it from engaging in policies, patterns, and/or practices that discriminate against its female technical employees because of their gender or participation in this lawsuit;
  2. An order requiring that Microsoft institute and carry out policies, practices, and programs that provide equal employment opportunities for all employees, regardless of gender, and that it eradicate the effects of its past and present unlawful employment practices;
  3. An order requiring Microsoft to develop and institute accurate and validated standards for evaluating performance, determining pay, and making promotion decisions;
  4. An order appointing a monitor to ensure that Microsoft complies with the injunction provisions of any decree that the Court orders; and
  5. An order restoring the plaintiff and class members to their rightful positions at Microsoft (i.e., reinstatement), or in lieu of reinstatement, an order for front pay benefits.

Contact Plaintiffs’ Counsel

Current and former female technical employees of Microsoft who wish to report their experiences at the company and/or submit a complaint should click here to contact plaintiffs’ counsel or contact Lieff Cabraser attorney Anne Shaver via direct email at ashaver@lchb.com or by telephone toll-free at 1 800 541-7358.

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