Employment: Obama Signs Lilly Ledbetter Law


As we predicted in our January newsletter, Congress passed the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act and President Obama signed it into law on January 29, 2009. This law overrides a Supreme Court decision that the statute of limitations on an equal pay claim begins to run when the discriminatory pay decision is made. Under that decision, employees like Lilly Ledbetter, who don’t find out that they are being paid unfairly until long after the decision is made, are out of time to bring a claim. Under the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, a new period of time in which to bring a claim begins each time a discriminatory paycheck is issued.

Sometimes wage disparities become so embedded that no one remembers why or how those pay decisions were made in the first place. With a new year and a new law, it may be a good time to look at the range of pay within job categories.

Interesting fact: All four women Republican Senators voted in favor of the Lilly Ledbetter Act; both Oklahoma Senators voted against it.

By Rebecca M. Fowler, rfowler@dsda.com

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Rebecca D. Bullard

Rebecca D. Bullard

Rebecca represents clients primarily in labor and employment litigation and counsels clients regarding everyday employment matters. 

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