Colorado Rights Blog

SB14-074: Repeal Damages State Empl Discrimination Claims

Racial Justice
Bill Number: SB14-074
Year: 2014
ACLU Position: Oppose
Sponsors: Szabo/Rivera


Under federal law, which applies to employers with 15 or more employees, a plaintiff who proves his or her employer has engaged in intentional discrimination may receive an award of compensatory and punitive damages. In the 2013 legislative session, the general assembly enacted legislation enabling plaintiffs in employment discrimination cases filed under state law, which applies to all employers regardless of size and which permits certain employment discrimination claims not currently allowed under federal law, to seek an award of compensatory and punitive damages. Additionally, a court is authorized to award reasonable attorney fees and costs to the prevailing plaintiff or, in cases the court finds to be frivolous, to the defendant. The bill eliminates the ability of a plaintiff filing an employment discrimination claim under state law to obtain a punitive damage award. Additionally, the bill prohibits an award of compensatory damages against an employer that employs fewer than 15 employees. Finally, the bill requires a court to award reasonable attorney fees and costs to a defendant who proves that an action was frivolous.

Current Status:

02/17/2014 - Senate Committee on State, Veterans, & Military Affairs Postpone Indefinitely
01/14/2014 - Introduced In Senate - Assigned to State, Veterans, & Military Affairs

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