What remedies/damages are available in a Title VII lawsuit?

Plaintiffs have a right to jury trials under Title VII, and successful plaintiffs can be awarded lost wages (both past and future), mental/emotional distress (compensatory) damages, punitive damages, and attorneys’ fees. The amount of potential punitive/compensatory damages is limited. The limits are determined based on the size of the employer. The current limits are (1) 15-100 employees = $50,000 cap; 101-200 employees = $100,000 cap; 201-500 employees = $200,000 cap, and over 500 employees = $300,000 cap. Note that these caps do not include lost wages, attorneys’ fees, and costs. In hotly contested employment claims, attorneys’ fees alone might easily exceed $100,000.  In other words, the real exposure to employers likely exceeds the caps referenced above.

Plaintiffs may also seek an injunction prohibiting an employer from committing future violations of Title VII or an order requiring hiring, reinstatement, or promotion, depending on the circumstances.  These remedies are available but not frequently pursued.

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The information herein is not legal advice. The information is in the form of legal education and is intended to provide general information about the matter discussed.  The above is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice and does not create an attorney/client relationship.