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EMPLOYMENT following the u.s. Supreme Courts ruling last year in National Railroad Passenger Corp. v. Morgan, the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said on June 6 that a sex- and race-discrimination plaintiff may recover punitive damages for a continuing violation beyond the statutory limitations period under both Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act and Section 1981. Madison v. IBP Inc., nos. 99-2853, 99-2859. A packinghouse worker filed suit under Title VII, Section 1981 and the Iowa Civil Rights Act after allegedly being harassed by her co-workers about her interracial marriage and her biracial children. A jury returned a verdict in her favor on all claims, awarding her $266,750 in emotional distress damages, $76,667 in back pay and benefits and $2,069,000 in punitive damages. On appeal, the 8th Circuit affirmed all but the punitive award, finding that violations outside the statute of limitations may have been included in that calculation. Granting certiorari, the Supreme Court vacated the 8th Circuit ruling and remanded for further consideration in light of its decision in Morgan. Morgan allows recovery under federal law for the entire period that a hostile work environment existed, as long as a single violation occurred within the charge filing period. The 8th Circuit concluded, however, that the full award could not be reinstated because the trial court’s jury instructions provided a uniform cutoff date that was inconsistent with Morgan. But it reinstated the woman’s recovery under the Iowa law because Morgan does not apply to state laws.

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