Justia New York Court of Appeals Opinion Summaries

Griffin v. Sirva, Inc.

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The Court of Appeals answered three questions certified to it by the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit regarding who may be liable under the New York State Human Rights Law. Plaintiffs sued Astro Moving and Storage Co., Allied Van Lines, and Sirva, Inc. after Astro fired them upon discovering their convictions for sexual offenses against young children. Astro performed moving services for Allied, and Allied was a subsidiary of Sirva, Inc. The Court of Appeals answered (1) section 296(15) of the New York State Human Rights Law, which prohibits discrimination in employment on the basis of a criminal conviction, limits liability to an aggrieved party’s “employer”; (2) common-law principles determine who may be liable as an employer under section 296(15), with the greatest emphasis placed on the alleged employer’s power “to order and control” the employee in his or her performance of work; and (3) section 296(6) of the New York State Human Rights Law, which provides for aiding and abetting liability, extends liability to an out-of-state nonemployer who aids or abets employment discrimination against individuals with a prior criminal conviction. View "Griffin v. Sirva, Inc." on Justia Law