Reforming Summary Judgment In Employment Litigation

The Institute aims to reform summary judgment practice in employment litigation to ensure that individuals whose workplace rights are violated are able to exercise their right to a jury trial and have their day in court. Employment cases are susceptible disproportionately to being dismissed before trial due to the misuse or abuse of summary judgment.

Summary Judgment Toolkit
The Institute’s Summary Judgment Toolkit educates the judiciary and broader legal community about the need for summary judgment reform, and supports employee rights advocates in defeating motions for summary judgment. By taking aim at the “problem doctrines”— judicially imposed obstacles that prevent employees from seeking to vindicate their workplace rights before a jury—The Toolkit provides employee rights advocates with resources to help them overcome summary judgment and keep their clients’ cases in court.

Top 10 Tips To Make Your Case “Summary Judgment Proof”
The Institute’s “Top 10 Tips To Make Your Case ‘Summary Judgment Proof’” was compiled from presentations at the National Employment Lawyers Association’s (NELA’s) seminar, Surviving Summary Judgment In Employment Cases (October 2009); a plenary session at the 2010 NELA Annual Convention titled “The Institute’s National Litigation Strategy Project: Reforming Summary Judgment Abuse” (June 2010); two panels at the 2011 NELA Annual Convention, “Lessons From The Professors: Defeating Summary Judgment & Enforcing The Right To Trial By Jury,” and “Using Techniques From Other Areas Of The Law To ‘Prosecute’ Employment Cases” (June 2011); and The Institute’s Symposium, Trial By Jury Or Trial By Motion?: Summary Judgment, Iqbal, And Employment Discrimination (April 2012).

2012 Symposium: Trial By Jury Or Trial By Motion?: Summary Judgment, Iqbal And Employment Discrimination
Nearly 200 employee advocates, judges and academics joined The Institute on Monday, April 23, 2012 at New York Law School for a symposium called, “Trial By Jury Or Trial By Motion?: Summary Judgment, Iqbal And Employment Discrimination.”

The symposium’s inter-disciplinary approach examined plaintiffs’ disproportionately high failure rates on pre- and post-trial motions in employment discrimination cases, and explored potential strategies to reverse this troubling trend.

The program was dedicated to the memory of Professor Robert Belton, who passed away in February 2012. It was the Professor who dreamed up the symposium as part of The Institute’s National Litigation Strategy Project (NLSP) and worked with us to make it a reality.

The materials for each panel, including the keynote address by The Honorable Denny R. Chin, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, are available on the New York Law School Law Review website.

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